I do not like to make assumptions. But, sometimes I do. I'll assume someone has bad intentions, when maybe they just have bad manners. I'll assume someone's goal is in conflict with mine, when it's really just a different path to the same destination.
Misunderstanding someone else's goal can lead to unnecessary conflict.
Clarify, clarify, clarify. Ask questions. Listen. Reach mutual understanding, even if agreement does not seem remotely possible. Understanding might get you half way there...
-- doug smith