Structural Engineers Don’t Care

Structural engineers don’t much care about how carefully and thoughtfully you’ve decorated the inside of your office building.

Structural engineers (if you ask them) care a lot about the joints underpinning the office building that you are standing in (or sitting in) right now. They concern themselves with critiquing, strategizing, and changing the skeletal structure of the building you’re in right now to make it safer and more efficient.

Going Toward the Hard Part 1
That joint right there doesn’t work.

Your Feelings Aren’t Working…

In the same fashion, some conflict engagement professionals (mediators, arbitrators, negotiators, lawyers) don’t care about how much you’ve decorated the inside of your relationship with the other party.

The types of feelings that you have about the other party.

The types of defensiveness that are stopping you from listening to the other party.

The depth and breadth of the sunk costs of time, relationship, goodwill, and on and on, between you and the other party.

Going Toward the Hard Part 2
That’s an anchor.

You Need An Engineer For Conflict

Some conflict engagement professionals (if you ask them) care a lot about showing you the hard parts of the problems that you are going to have to face, to fix, and then to rebuild on, in order to create a new reality out of the old reality of conflict.

If you’re not interested in finding out—and addressing—the hard parts of your conflict situation; if you’re not interested in going towards those hard parts to get the types of outcomes you believe you deserve, then you would do better to hire and listen to the conflict engagement professional version of an interior decorator.

Jesan Sorrells

Jesan Sorrells

Jesan Sorrells is the CEO and Founder of Human Services Consulting and Training and leads on HSCT's flagship product, LeadingKeys. Contact him directly at