A book review from Dan Beaulieu:
I Hear You: Repair Communication Breakdowns, Negotiate Successfully, and Build Consensus…In Three Simple Steps
Author: Donny Ebenstein
If your life is conflict free you don’t need this book, but then again who are you kidding?
This is the kind of book that you just don’t expect to see on a business bookshelf. In fact, you probably would not go looking for this book in the first place. After all, who thinks they need a book about resolving conflicts? It turns out we all do, whether it’s communicating with our boss, a co-worker, a customer or a neighbor; we all need the skills that Donny Ebenstein writes about in this book.
My favorite part of this book, besides the tools he teaches of course, was the fact that he uses real-life examples to set the stage for each step — each simple step, as he says. By using those specific examples (names changed to protect everyone, by the way) he then shows that by using the techniques laid out in the book you can, as he says, “repair communication breakdowns.” The key to what Ebenstein is writing about is flexibility to get in the other person’s head, walk in their shoes, if you will, and see things from their point of view…but without giving up on your own. Not an easy task that.
This is why we need techniques laid out here so that we can hold two points of view at the same time, thus allowing us the ability to work with the other party, come together, and develop a consensus that both sides can not only just live with but be able to love with. Like every elegant solution, this all sounds very easy, but it is only by following Ebenstein’s expert advice that we can even hope to get to the point where we can do this on our own while leaving our emotions at the door. Whether you are a teacher dealing with an administrator, an attorney trying to mediate a divorce, or a salesperson trying to make that sale with a difficult customer, this one is for you.
Don’t live another day without it.