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Don't understand their position, label it

So you've done all this excellent mental work removing yourself, listening, projecting backwards and forwards but you still haven't actually said anything. Congratulations the mental stuff is the hard part so now it's time to check your work.

Approach each conversation like an explorer. Start to label what you've observed phrased as a question and remember to keep "I" and "me" out of it

" You seem to be hesitant to commit to a new phase of the project"

"It looks like you don't see this strategy as a viable way forward"

"It sounds like you want C to come before A because you believe..."

Asking these questions is extremely important. It gets the other person to start thinking critically about what they're actually saying and starts to foster explanation. Honestly sometimes just asking the question can be enough to get people {{or: reoriented towards agreement | back to the same side}}

🚧 Look for moments of understanding

🚧This section is very incomplete🚧

probe for clarification and compare to what the other is saying

use 'processing silence' to postulate more potential middle ground

don't be afraid to tell them to wait if someone jumps to a conclusion

A quick observation on productivity:

Understanding people is hard. Understanding communication isn't.

I only intervene when I know two people are 'speaking past each other'. The chaos streams of ideation should be messy and they need to be separated from actual decision making. Everyone can't have equal input at every stage. I've found that conversational bridges are most helpful when they are built in the first-most stages of a project/conversation.

At some point a decision needs to be made. You're not facilitating complete agreement you're working to make sure everyone understands what the other is actually saying so that a more informed decision can be made.