At work and in home-life we sometimes hear someone say something that we disagree with. How we handle that will change the way the rest of that conversation goes. So how do you do say “sorry that’s not it at all,” without causing the other person to clam up or get argumentative?
I’ve written a number of times on the subject of Consistency. It is this same Consistency that causes the argument if not dealt with correctly.
You see, us humans have this need to stand by what we say, and even defend it. In some cases those who were studied would rather lie to a ridiculous extent, than go back on their original word.
We all do it.
Let’s say a member of our work team has come to us with something they believe is a cracking suggestion, but you know for one reason or another it won’t work. Shooting them down in flames will cause tension that you simply don’t need. There is another way.
If you listen to the person and then say “but I realised that won’t work because….” then the person will focus on all of those things after the word ‘but’ and feel bad. There is a simple change you can make.
Rather than the word ‘but’ use the word ‘and’, now your reply comes across not as a disagreement, but from a place of agreement.
In this example “and that would be a great idea if the…” and then go in to detail about when their suggestion would be a great idea.
Another way of using it is to say “and I used to think that until I tried it and here’s what happened” – again you are not coming across as superior or condescending, but showing that you too used to think that way and you are going to share your findings.
So when you disagree with someone, leave your but out of it, and put in an ‘and’ instead. As usual, come from a place of agreement. Always.