Spirited Debate on LO LO6654

Scott R. Cypher (scypher@perform.vt.edu)
Fri, 12 Apr 1996 21:57:02 -0400

Replying to LO6629 --

Each of your posts made me think:

Michael McMaster <Michael@kbddean.demon.co.uk>
> The part of Hal's point that I want to support is to distinguish
> between attack on the person and whatever occurs towards the ideas
> and the expression of those ideas.

Sometimes I judge people's points of view, and judged them for having that
point of view. What is difficult to realize is that they are just points
of view. A declaration of someone's beliefs, nothing more. Your point of
view is based on your value and belief system, one different from mine. To
attack the idea, it is easier to attack the person, or be seen as
attacking the person.

Fran Alexander
>I ask: Why do I want to say something in the first place? What will be
>the potential gain? Why am I reacting to this style? What is my part in

Excellent point; the conflict and desire to attack originates in
Do we see how we are connected to it? Can we be self-aware;
self-monitoring about our responses?;

Between stimulus and response there is a space
In that space lies our freedom and power to choose our responses
In those responses lie our success and our happiness (Covey)

>I am willing to do this with people who I am working closely with, with
>who ask for such feedback (genuinely, in my judgment), or with
>people I love.
> I find that in writing it is much easier to polarize ideas, reactions,
>concepts. The huge space for interpretation becomes larger, and is done
>solo, without opportunities to clarify words and ensure understanding of
>the other person's meaning.

I feel what you say, and live my life that way. Communication quality is a
function of the my relationship quality. Feedback (exchanges of
experience, suggestions, and with-holds) is most valuable with my closest
relationships. They give me the "essential communications" that strike my

Scott Simmerman
>Now, one loses certainty of understanding. Emphasis would say that each
>of these connotes a different meaning. And while some might attack me
>for even *using* this sequence of words, they *are* just words.
>We need to give people the benefit of the doubt when it comes to written
>postings and believe that people's intentions are always positive.

Without the face, intonations, gestures we are less able to infer a
message's intent. Different emphases produce different meanings. As Fran
showed us, it is more difficult to build a relationship via emails (slower
communication channel). It requires different assumptions on assumed
knowledge and we tend to repeat information (as I quote past messages) To
be more effective, it is necessary to find the "space" more, and think
thru a response, if any, and as Scott said, assume good intentions unless
otherwise demonstrated.

Margaret McIntyre
>Hal mistakes his ASSESSMENT of arrogance as a fact.

Judgement vs. Evaluation vs. Discrimination
Judgement is an experience that is good/bad based on the judger's value
Evaluation is usefulness of the experience based on who evaluates. It is
not good/bad, just that what is useful for you may not be useful for me.
Discrimination is different experiences. I don't look at good/bad/useful.
Your point of view is just different than mine and I understand what you
are saying. I won't judge arrogance, rightness, or even utility of what
you are saying. Difficult for me to get to, and I won't ever live my life
in pure discrimination. Don't think I could survive if I did.
But the more often I can reduce:
judgement to evaluation, and
evaluation to discrimination,
the better my relationships become. I've seen it happen. Once I became
attuned to asking "Am I/he/she in judgement, evaluation or discrimination
based on what was said" I am amazed how often we judge ourselves and
others, and how my judgements block my ability to hear what the other is
saying. Another approach, requiring self-discipline

I heard you say "X"
I acknowledge your point of view.
Here's my point of view, "Y".

This "discussion/dialogue" feels different than:

*I'm* right
No, *I'M* right

..and so on..


scypher@perform.vt.edu (Scott R. Cypher)

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>