If you are around me much, you know I latch on to phrases and use them to illustrate a point. I’ve used one several times in the last few days, so I’m prompted to share it with you: “No matter how thin you cut it, there are always two sides.”
In my role of CEO, occasionally folks bring me disputes to resolve. Someone will contact me and tell me a grievance. More times than not, if someone wants to involve me in a company dispute, it’s a big deal. So, along with the grievance, there is emotion and strong feeling.
I have learned the wisest course to take is to withhold judgement until I get the whole story. Hear me, I don’t always withhold judgement until I have heard both sides. But, when I don’t, I wish I had.
When I have time to ask questions, learn more, probe motivations, hear both sides – emotion ebbs away, respect is maintained.
Get both sides before reacting. Dig deeper. Hold off difficult words until you are certain they are called for. It will prove to strengthen your team.