Career Coaching day here at the Capitalist. Today's lesson: Disclaimers in conversations.
You have to have a conversation with another individual. You're trying to justify your stance or get the individual to take action. You know they're not necessarily gong to like or be open to what you have to say.
So you try to get in front of that by starting with a disclaimer. #fail
Need examples? Here you go:
"I'm not trying to be difficult, but"...
"Don't think I'm being defiant, but"...
"I know you and I haven't always seen eye to eye in the past, but"....
You know what happens you use disclaimers? The person in front of you already knows that you recognize you might be difficult, defiant or whatever language you laid down. The walls? They're already up, and the only way you're going to get what you want is if you already have incredible leverage.
Need an alternative? Make an observation ("Hey, I noticed your email to ACME didn't really have a clear call to action") and SHUT UP. Balls in their court. You made your observation, time for them to respond.
Even if they defend it perfectly, you've got the chance to re-engage by talking about common goals, etc, then asking them for help.
Make an observation, let them drive and then reframe and ask for help in a humble way.
Or you could tell them, "I'm not trying to be difficult, but"... You can almost hear their mumbling under their breath now...
Letting them drive part of the conversation and then asking for help is a smart alternative to your conversational disclaimers.
All disclaimers do is tell the world that people have considered you to be... whatever it is you're disclaiming... often in the past.