When you are working with your team by changing 2 words you can great much different and better results. By changing the word “I” to “we” you will eliminate the impression that there are sides. If the words I & you are used that creates different sides. When you use the words we & us we are on same side.
Something that is similar to this is true of the words problem and challenge. Nobody wants to have a problem at work. Most people tense up, become unsettled, and unhappy with problems. Almost everybody loves a challenge!
An example of both of these in action at the same time is a statement like this, “I have a problem with the way you are communicating with your co-workers.” This comment sets up you and the employee on opposite sides. It also gives them negative feelings and emotions around a “problem”. A better way to phrase this would be, “We are having a challenge with communication between co-workers. Do you have any ideas on how to improve it?” This statement sets you and the employee on the same side. It puts the issue in the context of a challenge instead of a problem. The employee is now engaged because you are valuing their opinion and requesting their input.
Changing “I” to “we/us” and “problems” to “challenges” will yield powerful results quickly.