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Supportive communication

There are five guidelines you can follow to foster a supportive communication environment:

  1. Describe feelings. Instead of blaming others, describe how you feel. This will help other members understand your point of view without becoming defensive.

  2. Focus on the problem. Doing this with personal bias is the best way to understand your teammates’ views. The discussion should never be about a team member as a person. It should remain focused on the issues at hand.

  3. Be honest. This is always the most effective way to communicate with teammates. Purposely using evasive language or operating from a hidden agenda will only create defensiveness and suspicion in your peers.

  4. Be empathic. Trying to understand how others feel will encourage teammates to share their views and to be supportive in return.

  5. Recognize other views. This both encourages participation and allows the team to consider many possibilities.


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