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The art of clear thinking is a learnable technique that will help you to sharpen your mind and allow you to cut through rhetoric and evaluate the reasoning (if any) behind the words.
To initiate this process, I want to show you six common fallacies, which blur accurate analysis of ideas.
Learn them and apply them every day.
Unreliable reasoning that stems from the idea that the "majority opinion" is a source of truth and a reliable guide for action. This is a very dodgy way to discover "Truth" For example; Imagine a passenger aircraft is having engine trouble. Would it be right for the pilot to hold a vote as to whether they should attempt an emergency landing? If not, why not?
Is the majority opinion in the office a reliable guide to intelligent action?
Can a million people be wrong?
Be careful if you are tempted to reinforce your argument with the cry "everyone else thinks so, too."
is a common trap that people fall into. Just because two things occur at the same time does not necessarily mean that one caused the other. It is a mistake to treat a correlation as a causal connection
is the mistake of dismissing an idea because of the person suggesting it. Imagine an overweight scientist has done research to prove that exercise reduces the risk of heart disease. You could be tempted to say, "What does he know? Look at the state of him!" Or you could say "He should practice what he preaches" and dismiss the valuable idea.
is the reverse of the above. It means that you give extra credibly to an idea because of the person. For example Elvis Presley was asked whether he thought the Americans were right to be at war in Vietnam. He wisely answers " I don't want to get into that. I am an entertainer. Ask me about my music"
I remember a radio programme asking agony-aunt Claire Raynor what she thought about the state of the criminal justice system in England and Wales. What specialised knowledge does her opinion carry?
Separate ideas from the person proposing them and evaluated an idea as a "thing" in its own right. Determine if the idea can act as a guide to intelligent action.
is an unsubstantiated statement of belief with no principle, reasoning or sensory evidence to support it. It is a mistake to grant plausibility to an assertion simply because it is forcefully delivered or repeated.
Frequency and volume should never take the place of logic in your decision to accept an idea as true.
Napoleon once quipped "Repetition is my strongest argument" (and then lost 250,000 in his disastrous Russian campaign) Equally, it follows that you should avoid trying to convince someone else by simply becoming louder and more passionate. Instead strive to make your reasoning inescapable.
is the mistaken belief that your chances of winning increases the longer you play. This is a false idea. If you are doing the wrong thing it makes no difference how long you do it. It still will not work. If your current plan has not been yielding any meaningful results, it will not change fortunes tomorrow. * Change your ideas. * Change the plan. * Change the actions. * The results must and will change.
All of these will help you get better results
Four step formula for constructing an argument
"Our attitude is the crayon that colors our world."
- Allen Klein, cancer doctor
In a time-pressed, relationship-diminished world, you are able to demonstrate a caring attitude most quickly through compassionate, complete listening. Yet we are so rushed, slowing down to listen, without interruption is an increasingly rare happening -- so of course you'll really stand out when you do.
Seeing the rewards for listening may help you become motivated to practice. Upfront, I admit that what I'm prosing here has often been hard for me to practice myself.
Learning to listen is more difficult than learning to ask good questions but there are rich and immediate rewards from being an obviously thoughtful listener. With less stress and energy on your part, you naturally bring others closer sooner, when you listen without interruption, rather than asking questions.
You can confirm by listening what you have most in common with that person, in that moment, so you can see where to build bridges to deepen the relationship. The deeper the relationship, the stronger the roots of connection for the inevitable mis-communication or disagreement.
Further, you'll know what part of your needs or request to bring up first to attract their support, because you have observed their hot button interests and dislikes. You can approach a topic by suggesting your idea in a way that serves the interests the speaker has already mentioned in the conversation. In a crowd of active speakers, you may feel left out or shunted aside when you speak less, but if you wait until others have spoken first, you can propose your suggestions or idea as specific extensions or examples of what others have already said is important to them.
Quieting the chattering mind promotes directed action. Listening may seem like a passive task, but, in fact, it requires more mental and emotional energy to do right than even speaking compellingly. Why? Because our gut instinctual reaction is to perceive that other people mean the same thing that we would mean if they say or act a certain way.
For example, a man who once worked for me when I headed a high tech division of a company was often treated as if he was thick-headed or even a withholder because he took longer to respond to others' questions, spoke much more slowly and haltingly than most everyone else in this fast-paced company and seldom looked people in the eye when he spoke to them.
"There is much to be said for not saying much."
- Frank Tyger
As well, he seldom answered a question directly but often gave lengthy preambles and apparently tangential facts before he main his main point. He was, however the most brilliant, big picture and inventive of the people I met in the company. He was also extremely shy, easily overwhelmed by fast movements, loud and rapid speaking and rambunctious, interruptive discussions -- the hallmarks of many of the meetings in this company. His core work group, after considerable friction and conflict, miraculously agreed on some specific rules to see if it would help them get along better. This happened only after he wrote a memo that elegantly and articulately outlines a solution to the main problem on the project in which they were working.
The rest of the group then realized that their success depended on making him feel comfortable in exchanging ideas with them. They agreed that they would not interrupt him when he was speaking, at least for four minutes, a more reasonable goal, they thought, that attempting to say they would never interrupt him. He, in turn, agreed to propose his main idea upfront, and then elaborate, and to also respond directly to questions, then expand upon his answer. The unexpected side benefit is that, over time, he became much more comfortable with speaking up sooner and ooking at others more as he spoke. The rest of the group, in turn, started noticing that thye were seeing other sides of each other as their meetings had slow as well as fast-paced parts to them.
Be the Kind of Person Who Now Gets More Done - Through Others' Best Side
Research shows that Americans are more likely to trust and support a new kind of leader who exhibits strong listening and action skills. Unlike the John F. Kennedy - model of "Charismatic Leader" that worked in the past, they find other kinds of behavior and group interaction more satisfying and inspiring. My apologies to the Broadcast Engineering readers who are not in the U.S. but I hope some of these finding will also provde helpful to you.
While many experts on leadership such as Warren Bennis and Steve Covey offer valuable ideas on what leadership should look like, two research studies, one by the U.S. Air Force and the other by M.I.T, show that people are more likely to listen to and take action in support of certain people who exhibted at least three of seven behavioral traits, regardless of the "Synthesizer-Style" leaders' age, sex, ethnicity, education or even physical size.
"Synthesizer Leaders" bring out the most productive, "high performance side of their colleagues. While this new style of "Most Valuable Player" do make their presence felt in their organization, they are much less likely than past leaders to take center stage in all situations, voice an opinion early or take charge of projects. They do not need TQM programs because they set clear, specific rules and rewards up front which they don't change mid stream.
"If they want peace, nations should avoid the pinpricks that precede cannot shots."
- Napoleon Bonaparte
Here is a summary of those behavioral traits I've written in the form of instructions for your to consider following:
4. Play it Back
Seek and reward candid feedback on an ongoing basis, and respond specifically and soon to what you've been told, including the rational about the action you will or will not take, based upon that feedback.
Emmy-winning former Wall Street Journal and NBC reporter, Kare Anderson is the author of SmartPartnering, Resolving Conflict Sooner, Getting What You Want, Walk Your Talk and LikeAbility; and publisher of Clean Air at Home, Moving From Me to We and Say it Better, collectively serving over 42,000 subscribers in 26 countries.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Kare_Anderson
As a leader, you will find that you have to deal with a whole range of different problems, issues and challenges. Your success as a leader depends on how you respond to these challenges. Like everything, there are a number of different options you could take to addressing the specific situation and you choose what is most appropriate. Situational leadership or the one size does not fit all approach is about adapting your style to the specific situation.
Leadership styles fall into 5 main categories:
• Telling- where you tell
• Telling and selling- where you explain the why and make the case
• Consultation - where you want to get ideas but retain responsibility for the final decision
• Participation -where you involve others in the solution and decision process
• Empowerment - where you pass the power and authority to others
So let's take a look at some specific examples.
If you are dealing with someone who is a beginner with limited experience or knowledge, you will probably be much more directive about what you want and how you want it done.
On the other hand you might be faced with a situation where someone is not a beginner but for some reason has become disillusioned or lost confidence. In this situation, coaching that person is what will work best most of the time.
There may be people or teams of people who are incredibly capable but by nature cautious. Often people in technical professions which are highly rules based fall into this category. For this group, a supportive style might work best where you focus on encouraging and re-assuring
Finally, you probably have some individuals or teams that are best described as self reliant and achievement orientated. For this group, the most successful leadership style is to delegate the task and responsibility, get out of the way and leave them to get on with it.
Bottom line: Think about the other person or group when deciding what leadership style to adopt.
Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements (G&A) works with individuals, teams and organisations to develop their management and leadership capability.
With 25 years business experience in a range of sectors, he understands first hand the real challenges of managing and leading in the demanding business world.
You can learn more about Duncan, Goals and Achievements services and products and sign up for his free e-course and newsletter athttp://www.goalsandachievements.co.uk/
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Duncan_Brodie