Never Disagree (without following these rules)

In safety, and nearly every other profession, disagreements happen.

Arguments, cold wars, debates, and differing opinions go with the territory of work.

How does one keep a level head, maintain mutual respect, while still continuing a dialogue when disagreements exist?

Follow these rules. From Anatol Rapoport, a social psychologist and game theorist, these rules encourage respect and dialogue.

1. Summarize the other’s stance so well that they wish they’d said it that way.

2. Point out areas of agreement.

3. State what you learned from the other’s point of view.

4. After doing the above, then you can offer a rebuttal.

*Rapoport’s Rules summarized from “Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking” by Daniel C. Dennett.


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