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How To Tell Someone They're Wrong (And Make Them Feel Good About It)

Ambiguity is your enemy

... when telling someone they're wrong.

Be concrete and don't sermonize, even if the person that's receiving your criticism knows she did something wrong.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

How To Tell Someone They're Wrong (And Make Them Feel Good About It)

How To Tell Someone They're Wrong (And Make Them Feel Good About It)

https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevenberglas/2011/03/22/how-to-tell-someone-theyre-wrong-and-make-them-feel-good-about-it/

forbes.com

7

Key Ideas

Never qualify

When preparing to tell someone what they did wrong, avoid using qualifications like "With all due respect," "No offense," or "Don't take this the wrong way" to soften criticism.

Say what the problem is

... and if you must amplify your message, say where your data came from. Never try to simultaneously be a good cop and a bad cop. 

Make it clear that your goal is constructive change.

Ambiguity is your enemy

... when telling someone they're wrong.

Be concrete and don't sermonize, even if the person that's receiving your criticism knows she did something wrong.

Deal in facts

Objectivity is crucial to constructive criticism.

The goal is to communicate that a performance standard has not been met. Your sentiments/judgments are irrelevant.

Focus on behavior, not character

For example, in saying "You were lazy in preparing this report" you may think you are helping the other person to improve a skills; instead, it addresses your assumption about the person's attitude toward their work.

Show them the way

Criticism without an action plan is worthless. 

Give people direction or keep your mouth shut.

Let the fixes feel like their own

If people feel you support their fundamental views and value them, the change will be easy and natural.

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Reappraising Conversations

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Don’t Be Self-Centered

It’s key to connecting with people to suspend your ego; to put your own needs, wants and opinions aside. Anxiety does the opposite bringing your feelings and expectations to the forefront.

Focus on the other person. Simply listen to what they have to say and ask them to tell you more. 

Reappraisal

Just because you feel it doesn’t make it real. Feelings come from beliefs. Change the beliefs and feelings will change.

Research and anecdotal evidence show that the simple act of positively reimagining something can be enough to decrease anxiety.

2 more ideas

Forms of manipulation

We are continually subject to manipulation. For instance:

  • Gaslighting: It involves encouraging someone to doubt their own judgment and to rely on the manipulator's advice ins...

Manipulation

Manipulation often harms. Manipulative phishing and other scams make identity theft possible; manipulative social tactics can support unhealthy relationships.

Manipulation is wrong because it involves immoral techniques. It means treating the other as mere objects and not as a rational being.

When influence is manipulative

Influence is manipulative depending on how it is being used.

If the manipulator attempts to get someone to adopt what the manipulator himself regards as wrong, it resembles lying. The liar tries to get you to choose a false belief or to make a mistake in what he thinks, feels, doubts or pays attention to.

one more idea

Addressing reluctance

The problem of reluctance is commitment, not negativity.

The worst thing you can do is explain why it-will-work to people who aren’t committed to make-it-work.

Help reluctant people make commitments

  • Listen to constructive dissent. Don’t minimize concerns.
  • Keep the big picture in focus. Describe success and tell stories of past success.
  • Create safety nets. Make commitment less dangerous.
  • Make commitments. Reluctant teams are often led by leadership that’s playing it safe.
  • Build relationships. Strong connection enables deep commitment.
  • Divide responsibility between several people.