- The purpose of dialogue is “to form a new basis from which to think and act” (William Isaacs) and to understand and learn from one another. (You cannot "win" a dialogue.)
- All dialogue participants speak for themselves, not as representatives of groups or special interests.
- Treat everyone in a dialogue as an equal: leave role, status and stereotypes at the door.
- Be open and listen to others even when you disagree with a particular perspective or statement; and try not to rush to judgment.
- Search for assumptions (especially your own).
- Listen with empathy to the views of others: acknowledge you have heard the other especially when you disagree.
- Look for common ground.
- Expressing disagreement is natural and expected but do so in terms of ideas, not personality or motives.
- Keep dialogue separate from decision-making. (Dialogue should always come before decision-making).
modified from http://www.viewpointlearning.com/about-us/ground-rules-for-dialogue/