How Might That Be True?



It’s obvious in retrospect, but I found a distinction between low-friction communication and high-friction communication. 

By low-friction, I mean *person A* doesn’t have to work that hard for *person B* to get a point.

I find low friction scenarios are often cases where *person B* starts with the mind-set “how might that be true” and they help *person A* tease out, or make their point. 

The starting point is collaboration — two people working to understand the message. 

I find high-friction scenarios are often cases where *person B* starts with the mind-set “let me tell you how you’re wrong.” 

It’s really easy among a bunch of engineers to rip ideas apart. 

The trick I found is to first ask, “how might that be true?” 

This gets over the potential hump that maybe while the delivery was off, there was merit in the message (or a concept needs help to be teased out) and it certainly builds more rapport than starting off as a devil’s advocate.

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