There is a specific pattern which appears frequently in my conversations and alienates my conversation partners. I would like advice on how to address that pattern as a whole, not just the one example I am giving.
It starts with someone expressing an idea. Today, it started with a colleague in a meeting, who said something along the lines of "we need a chart of our product setup, let's set aside a slot next all-hands meeting to work together on it". To which I answered "And how do we ensure that we don't end up with 3-4 people actively discussing and the other 25 zoning out?".
From everybody's reaction, and earlier conversations with friends, I can now piece back that I came across as saying "What a stupid idea, it will never work because people will zone out for sure".
The actual contents of my mind (some more salient than others at the time) were roughly "What an interesting idea, I would like to engage more with it. I would like it to succeed, but it's complex enough that it's not guaranteed if we just implement it naively. I just noticed a possible failure mode, and maybe you have already thought of it and have a strategy for avoiding it. If yes, I would be interested to hear it. If no, then I propose that we think about it, now or sometime later, because that way your idea is more likely to be successful".
This is something which has happened to me more than once, with different people, and different ideas. They say "we should do X", I say "and what can be done about Y", and they hear it as criticism. So I am afraid that I might be gaining a reputation as a grumpy naysayer.
What would be a good way to express my actual reaction, while still ensuring that the potential complication gets addressed? I would like some answer pattern which is more succinct than what I typed above, because I am afraid that people won't follow me if I am so wordy, and will probably change the topic before I have come to the point of the potential complication. Also, I am better at reflecting on the meaning of conversation after they have happened, but much more reactive during them, so I need something which I don't have to compose carefully in my mind for a full minute - I will either forget it, or somebody else will jump to another topic while I am doing it.