A Crucial Skill/Martin Rosenfeld, JD

Posted on September 26, 2020


Here is a sentence fragment. See if you can fill in the missing word. “It is almost impossible to hate a person whom we fully…”. The fragment is attributed to Rabbi Ralph Nichols. He was considered a pioneer in the “field of listening”. The complete sentence reads “It is almost impossible to hate a person whom we fully understand”. Disputes are typified by a failure to get to a meeting of the minds. When this leads to a deadlock, the parties will need to hone their listening skills. Why is the other party saying what she is saying? What does he really want? Why can’t she understand my point of view? A communication roadblock occurs when a party, or both parties, fail to listen with the thought of understanding another’s point of view. Try listening and try understanding the “other”. Not only will it reduce feelings of animosity, it may well lead to a Win-Win resolution. Talking is fine, but you can learn a good deal more by listening. Mediate don’t litigate.