The Massage and The Message
We don't present a completed document and then try to force it on others. We give others a draft and solicit their ideas. We keep massaging the document until it is where it should be. This doesn't mean that principles are abandoned but the primary focus is simple: How do we obtain the highest quality result that will garner enough support to work over the long-term?
When we encounter opposition, we don't vilify our adversaries or ascribe bad motives. If our staff members start to cross that line, we bring them up short. Labeling and calling names shuts down reasoning and, much as we'd like to believe otherwise, we have not yet cornered the market on reason. We do our best to understand our opponents' positions and we do so with the unspoken realization that they just might have a valid point here or there.
We look past the immediate objective in order to keep the larger picture in mind and never forget that we may need today's critics as tomorrow's allies.
We operate with a larger purpose. We are supposed to be leaders, not blind advocates, and builders, not bullies. We are not in the grudge-generation business.
The massage is often a very important part of our message.