Deconstructive Communication [Kagan & Lahey]

What do you see? Old woman? Or young woman?

So what are we talking about here?

The distinction between “constructive criticism” and “destructive criticism” is a well accepted one. Constructive and destructive criticism differ on several attributes. Criticism that is specific, supportive, solution-oriented, and timely is often described as constructive criticism; while criticism that is vague, blames the person, threatening and pessimistic if often described as destructive criticism.

But what if constructive criticism also has its challenges?

If we dig one level deeper, and consider the big underlying assumptions of both constructive and destructive feedback, we’ll find that they have a lot in common.

Is there an alternative?

There is. This is what deconstructive communication is all about. Deconstructive communication aims to level the playing field of the dialogue, working under a different set of big underlying assumptions.

Constructive Communication vs. Deconstructive Communication

Here’s a good summary of the main differences between the two:

Which one should I use?

I would not go as far as to say that constructive communication is bad, and deconstructive communication is good. There are likely some situations in which the assumptions underlying constructive communication are rather accurate. If you choose to use constructive communication, do so while making explicit decision to choosing over deconstructive communication, given the accuracy of its underlying assumptions.

Org Hacking

Solving Human Puzzles

Itamar Goldminz

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Org Hacking

Solving Human Puzzles