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Win debates by resisting the bait

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in Office Communication,Workplace Communication

You propose a sensible idea to the CEO: The company should revive an old, much-loved marketing campaign. But the CEO insists on entirely new branding. He says, “You haven’t sold me. Why should we go back when I say we go forward?”

You’re tempted to debate, but then you wisely think, “This guy’s hung up on something. I better find out what it is.”

Rather than rehash your arguments, pose questions (“How will you assess the success of the campaign?”, “What’s your goal with this campaign?”) and listen with an open mind. Only after you dig for information and digest it thoroughly can you reposition your idea as ideally suited to address his concerns and meet his objectives. That’s better than rushing to defend your proposal without engaging in fact-finding.

 

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