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Dealing 'softly with strawman' tactics

Often in business meetings the prosocial motherhood statements are used as 'not one of us' tactics.

Since I'm often in IT delivering for the business they try and portray your words as 'technical' or not sympathetic to the business.  Any project manager who REALLY was like that wouldn't last long.

So they'll take a well balanced plan that considers the business and the practicalities of delivering a system and say things like.   I think we need to consider more than the solution view.   Or:  "I'm not across all this technical detail but the business view is...."

My standard response is "I think you might have miss-heard,  what I said is...."    But its a bit brutal - breaking rapport like that.  And I'd like a response that ideally tries to bring them back to a collaborative frame.

I saw on one of John's threads that Lucio suggested: "Yes, that is what I just said" and then summarize what u said.  Was that the correct context?   And are there other ways of dealing?

I was also thinking of going back with same tactic - miss-interpret what they said.   "Yes you're absolutely right this plan does put in place a solution that considers all the viewpoints." Or:  "Yes good point - this plan does support the business view and has enough supporting detail to get it done."

Hey T,

Yeah, I'm familiar with business folks pulling that power move.
It's a small one-upping / social climbing, as if to show themselves as superior to "those geeky guys".

I think the crucial question is here:

Do they support your view when they provide the "business" rationale, or not?

If yes, then you can safely ignore their power move and go ahead with "yeah, exactly, the technical specs also support that, because... ".

If what they say instead either does not support your point of view, or ignores some crucial aspects of what you said, you can skip the correction, which indeed breaks some rapport, and start by saying:

You: Yeah, I see what you mean from a business perspective, from the technical perspective... (and you repeat what you've just said)

If you have some specific examples, feel free to share, it's always easier to work with specific examples.

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?
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