Argument – a Waste of Time and Energy?

photo by papercuts
photo by papercuts

Have you ever been in a group discussion, disagreed with what someone is saying and felt a burning desire to ‘show them the light’? If so – and assuming you acted upon it – how did they respond?

I’m willing to guess not well. People are naturally distrustful of words, they are defensive and stubborn. Beliefs are shaped by experience and can harden into conviction. While your goal might be to influence someone to your school of thought, by arguing you may inadvertently be hardening their resistance.

On the surface, people may appear to agree with you, or at least listen to what you say. The reality is they are probably humouring you or waiting for their turn to speak. Argument is not an effective tool for influence and can have the negative effect of leaving you frustrated.

Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level, then beat you with experience.
Unknown

If arguing doesn’t work, then how do you change someone’s mind?

First of all, be careful not to totally discount argument. Circumstances may arise when arguing can be beneficial, you may even consider intentionally losing an argument as a means of influence.

When you let someone else win an argument, often you both end up winners.
Richard Carlson

People need to come to their own conclusions

The single most effective method for influencing someone’s behavior is to lead them down a path in which they make their own decision. If they believe they came up with the idea themselves, the more successful you have been.

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The 5 Barriers to Personal Growth on Company Time – Part 2: Don’t Work Too Fast

time is on my side

Photo by littledan77

If you don’t have seem to get enough time to earn and living and do the things that you like then you’re working too hard. You owe it to yourself to spend as much time as possible on fulfilling your needs on the company’s clock. So far I’ve covered:

Why You Need To Lookout for Number One. In this post, I’ll be covering the second barrier to personal growth on company time: setting an expectation of how fast you can work and having to live upto it.

Barrier 2: Don’t Work Too Fast

People will base their expectations of us on their perception of what you have done in the past. Did you rush to complete that task in two hours of being asked to do it or did you say that you’d complete it by tomorrow?

Understand: you have direct control over how people perceive you, by setting a high expectation for yourself, any future tasks you do may be considered ‘late’ or ‘slack’ if you’ve taken longer then the time people expected you to take. Continue reading