The only way to get the best of an argument…

… is to avoid it.

That is the first of 12 suggestions from Dale Carnegie on how to “win people to your way of thinking“. A couple of the others that I really like are:

  • Show respect for the other person’s opinion. Never say, “You’re wrong”.
  • If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.
  • Begin in a friendly way.
  • Get the other person saying, “Yes, yes” immediately.
  • Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.
  • Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas and desires.

In many ways, these remind of what I understand to be the basic attributes of diplomacy and negotiation. Obviously, there may come a point when these efforts fail and other, more drastic, approaches need to be taken.

Some would say that we are already beyond the point that these types of approaches can be of value in ongoing debates surrounding autism and autism advocacy. But I don’t believe that.

What about you?

One thought on “The only way to get the best of an argument…

  1. I believe it’s group dependent.

    If any group is willing to listen, and not moderate other’s opinion out of their presentation, then they are Trying to do this. But the groups that will not tolerate dissenting opinions in their blogs, lets say, have already moved into the position where there might not even be any way to argue with them anyhow. They have become overcommitted to their point of view.


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