We are living in a virtual world today. Most of the conversations either happen over phone or via email. Yes, there are some other ways of communication too like Skype Video calling, Wattsapp and Viber etc. It is often difficult to disagree over email. However, most of the business professionals prefer to use email as their main medium of communication. Either you are working as an employee or a client; the other party will prefer to contact you via email. Agreeing and disagreeing is a common practice in everyday conversation and discussion. If you are talking with someone in person and you don’t like one of their ideas, you can disagree with them right away. However, politely and respectfully disagreeing with someone over email is a hard thing to do. You never know how a person will perceive your words. There is a saying that, It is not what you say, it is how you say it.
It is really important for a professional to learn the art of disagreeing with someone over email. In this post, I’m going to share three ideas with you that will be helpful in disagreeing with anyone via email.
Disagree With Ideas, Not With People
While disagreeing with someone over email, you must mention that you are disagreeing with their ideas and not with them. You should not let anyone think that you are disrespecting them by disagreeing to what they are saying. If you don’t like the idea pitched by one of your client, you should decline it firmly yet respectfully. Instead of saying, “You are wrong,” use terms like, “Your idea is good, but I think we can bring more improvement by acting on my business plan,” or “I’m glad you brought it up, I was also thinking about the same issue and I think, this idea will not work well with our business model.” You see, disagreeing is not as difficult as it may look like in the beginning. You just need to learn how to play with words and never let anyone get a feeling that you are disrespecting them.
Always Go for a Direct Approach
One thing that I have noticed in business discussions over email is that, people often sideline themselves from a certain topic because they want to avoid disagreement. This is not a good approach because sooner or later, you will have to discuss that issue with your client. Using the direct approach is always a good decision. You should discuss those matters first in which there might be some contradiction between two parties. This will help you settle ground rules and reaching to a conclusion will become easier too.
Build a Bridge to the Future
A disagreement may become so big that you may get a feeling that the client will stop giving business to you. In such situation, you should politely tell them that you respect their thoughts and it will be an honor for you to learn more about their business plan. This will give an impression of respectfulness and dignity to the other party and you will be successful in building a bridge for future business opportunity.