Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “This article by Oxford University lawyer Jonathan Herring, tenders five steps to transforming unproductive shouting matches or passive aggressive avoidance into productive conversations that result in all participants having a better understanding of each other’s views. Herring reminds readers…”
1) “Come prepared … think carefully about what it is you are arguing about and what it is you want.
2) Craft your arguments … Spend time thinking about how to present your argument. Body language, choice of words, and manner of speaking all affect how your argument will come across,
3) Plan your counterpoints… Think carefully about what arguments the other person will listen to …. Which kinds of arguments do they find convincing?
4) Beware crafty tricks… Arguments are not always as good as they first appear. Be wary of your opponent’s use of statistics.
5) Be creative to resolve deadlock … be creative in finding ways out of an argument that’s going nowhere.”