Good communication is difficult, great communication requires a thoughtful approach.
One of the core tenants of great communication is an underlying emphasis on adding value to people. When asking a person to change it is easy to slip into confrontational language and receive a defensive response.
For example: “In our marketing meetings, you never ask for my opinions!”
Such language is directed at the receiver and the instinctual choice is to fight back or admit defeat, an emotional response. Neither of which we particularly enjoy.
By changing the wording a bit to neutral language you can achieve the results you set out for without causing an emotional upheaval.
For example: “In our marketing meetings, I would like more opportunities to contribute my opinion. I have ideas I think could move us forward. How can we make that happen?”
Adding that little question at the end takes it a step further and puts the receiver in control. They will more than likely approve your request to look like the good person!
Think about some recent interaction you have had with people. What type of language did you use? What was its impact? How can you integrate neutral language into your everyday speech patterns?