team technology
What is assertiveness'

How To Be More Assertive

What is
assertiveness'

Four styles

Rights and
responsibilities

Positive beliefs

Being direct

Expressing
disagreement constructively

Managing the other
person's behaviour
by enforcing
a process

Building rapport

Focusing on facts

Focusing on
consequences

Stopping put-down
behaviour

Text Book Techniques

Personal
action planning

Expressing Disagreement Constructively

How To Be More Assertive: Part 6

When you disagree with someone, it is often best to be direct and clear, as it avoids an unfortunate misunderstanding. Eg: when someone disagrees they often go quiet; yet silence is often interpreted by others as agreement. Hence, there is a miscommunication.

Disagreement can sometimes feel confrontational, so the assertive approach is to express disagreement in a constructive manner. This involves stating the disagreement clearly, but then following up immediately with one of the following:

  1. a proposed alternative

    "No I can't take you to the airport. John may know of someone else going to the airport this afternoon - try asking him."
  2. asking the other person to think of an alternative

    "No, I can't take you to the airport. Who else could you ask'"
  3. stating where you agree

    "I don't think that idea will work, but I do agree that something needs to be done about it, and we've got to find a solution"

Expressing disagreement constructively can also help to overcome the "Apollo Syndrome", a phenomenon whereby highly intelligent individuals perform badly as a team. The reason is that they keep focusing on disagreements, so spend their time in arguments that go round in circles.



How To Be More Assertive:
Part 7: Manage the other person's behaviour, by enforcing a process