Questions and judging in a favorable light.

Real name
William Berkson
REPLIES
Real name
William Berkson

William Berkson replied 5 months 1 week ago

Usually, the smart thing to do when you get criticism is to ask questions of the other person, rather than to defend yourself. Chris Voss, master hostage negotiator recommends what he calls "calibrated questions". These are 'what' or 'how' questions. An example is, "What can I do about that?" This cleverly invites the other person to put himself or herself in your world. It thus invites empathy and creative problem-solving. Voss also recommends avoiding pointed questions like "Why?" or specifics. And he recommends not just trying to understand specifics, but also the other person's point of view, their world. Marriage expert John Mordechai Gottman also views this understanding of the other person's hopes and dreams as critical to an on-going, successful marriage relationship. Child care expert Rudolph Dreikurs also said "Don't fight, don't give in." The challenge is how to turn the conversation with creative questions.

My question for the wisdom of you all is, how do you keep your presence of mind to ask questions, rather than defend yourself, or attack the other person? 

Real name
Donald Koller

Donald Koller replied 5 months 1 week ago

Bill, I find that if I can take a while -- even a minute -- to calm down, then I am better to engage with the other person in a constructive way.