Discussion: Reflection on Logical Thinking and Persuasiveness
In high-stakes situations (and sometimes even when the stakes are low), differences in opinion can lead to divisive conflicts. One manager may believe that their division should receive extra funding, while another manager may feel that the money would be better spent on marketing or R&D. Maybe the decision comes down to a blue logo versus a red logo, a 1-page website versus a multi-layered website, or firing a chronically late employee versus working with that employee’s schedule. These types of decisions could theoretically be settled with a 50/50 coin toss, but personal preferences and agendas are often what sway people to one side or the other. However, if you can rely on a logical thought process to come to a decision and if you develop strong persuasive abilities, then the chances of swaying others to your way of thinking may be much better than 50/50.
For this Discussion, you will reflect on a past conflict in a workplace setting in which one person (or group) strongly disagreed with another person (or group), and you will consider the part that logical thinking and persuasion played in the resolution of that conflict.
To prepare for this Discussion:
- Review the resources from Weeks 4–5.
- Review the Academic Writing Expectations for 2000/3000-Level Courses, provided in this week’s Learning Resources.
- Reflect on a time when you experienced a conflict in the workplace setting in which at least two people (or groups) reached an impasse or strongly resisted each other on a decision. You do not necessarily need to be one of the people involved in the conflict, but you should have at least enough information to be able to address the Discussion prompts.
- Note: For this Discussion, be sure to disguise the names of any people and organizations involved with the scenario.
By Day 3
Post a 150- to 225-word (2- to 3-paragraph) analysis of the role of logical and persuasive arguments in a workplace conflict you observed in the past. In your analysis, include the following:
- Briefly describe the conflict in the workplace setting, including who was involved (using disguised names), the underlying position arguments from a logical perspective, and the ultimate result of the conflict.
- Identify any logical fallacies that were used on either side of the argument.
- Analyze the persuasive elements of the side of the argument that you personally supported and explain why you supported that side of the argument at that time.
- To support your response, be sure to reference at least one properly cited scholarly source.
By Day 5
Respond with at least 75 words (1 paragraph) each to two or more of your colleagues’ postings by doing one of the following:
- Offer any additional insights on how someone from either side of the conflict your colleague described incorporated a logical perspective.
- Offer an additional insight into what you perceive to be a logical fallacy from your colleague’s scenario that he or she may not have identified.
- Share your perspective on the persuasive argument that your colleague defended. If you agree with his or her side of the argument, provide additional support. If you agree with the counterargument, provide a rationale as to why.