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THE TALKING STICK

To understand someone, one must  forget their own experiences, beliefs, attitudes, emotions, knowledge and visual perspective. Knowing another’s mind requires asking and listening. The gains from getting perspective directly instead of interpreting someone’s perspective can be big.

Getting someone’s perspective you not only need to listen, you need to verify that your understanding is correct and not an interpretation. Native Americans (Iroquois Nation) have a method called the “talking stick.” When different tribes (within the Nation) have a dispute, they would discuss them. Only the person holding the “talking stick” is allowed to speak. When he is finished, he hands the “talking stick” to  someone else, who would first have to reiterate the first speakers position to that person’s satisfaction. Only when the first person felt understood, could the next person make his point. This fosters listening. Reiterating someone else’s point to their satisfaction you will find out if you have understood correctly or incorrectly. This practice gives one the humility of knowing another’s desires or needs.

When a customer gives a critique, before you leave one should repeat back to the customer what “notes” you have written down. This will give the customer the confidence that you are leaving with their needs understood and not leaving with an interpretation of their needs.

Categories: Philosophical Perspective

ron winnegrad

Ron Winnegrad has been a Perfumer and teacher for 46 years. As a perfumer, Ron has been able to express the world he sees through a rainbow of olfactive and emotive visions. As a teacher, Ron has helped others to see fragrance through his own multi sensorial lens.

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