Psychology Today: Dr. Beth Fisher-Yoshida On a Unique Approach to Difficult Conversations

In Psychology Today, negotiation and conflict resolution program director Dr. Beth Fisher-Yoshida discusses the triplet, a negotiating technique that can help resolve a difficult conversation.

She uses the example of a last-minute request from a boss to an employee that either turns into an ultimatum or turns into an invitation for creative problem solving.

She writes, "There is a concept in communication called the triplet. It is an A-B-A exchange with three turns that can shift a dialogue in turn three."

She offers the following example of a successful triplet: "I know it is last minute (and I apologize for that). What are some ideas you have about how you can go to the concert and complete the assignment for tomorrow morning? I am open to hearing your suggestions."

"The responsibility of creating a dialogue that promotes more mutually beneficial outcomes lies with both parties," Dr. Fisher-Yoshida says. "We cannot directly control another person’s response to us; we can only try to control our own response to them."