In the latest episode of his Pinkcast, Dan Pink offers guidance on how to respond more effectively to people when they come to us with complications, confusion, and complaints.
Usually, when people come to us with a problem or grievance, we try to respond with a quick solution to the issue at hand. This is often not an optimal approach to the problem.
A better solution, according to two authors, is to utter three words.
So what are these three words?
I tried to guess what those three words might be and came up with the following possibilities.
- not my problem
- please go away
- go eat something
- deal with it
- I like turtles
- you are fired
- I am busy
- eat, pray, love
- control alt delete
Surprisingly, not a single one of the 27 words above was part of the suggested three-word phrase, which was… drum roll, please….
Tell Me More
There are two reasons why this works:
- you learn more about the context of the situation
- it is clear that when you ask someone to “tell you more”, you are listening, not just offering advice.
People want to be heard, and the anger and resentment can dissipate which may then enable the person to come up with a solution on their own.
Dan closes his short Pinkcast (130 seconds), with the following advice:
Resist the temptation to jump in by jumping back…
*image from The Crossing