This is the sixth of a series of posts based on my review of the book, Difficult Conversations (By Stone, Patton and Heen, Penguin Books, 2000). I highly recommend this book.
The Solution: Focus on Learning, not Accusing
The authors go through a lengthy and explicable approach about how to get through a difficult conversation, which I won’t attempt to cover in depth…only to offer brief insight (and a strong suggestion that you read the book itself).
1. Start with the third story: All mediation starts from the “third story” how an interested but non-biased party would view the two opposing stories told to the mediator. Understand that each party “contributes” to the third story and that neither opposing story is correct.
2. Impact (on us) is NOT Intention: We often believe we know the intentions of another and worse yet, we usually assume the worst. WRONG….oops…even this sounds a bit too judgmental but I hope you get the idea.