Banging Heads and Soothing Feathers: Difficult Conversations

In today’s competitive, diverse, and fragmented workplace, conflict happens.
Different people, with different work styles, personal and professional needs, are bound to clash about what to do and how to get it done. 
There’s no need to fear conflict, resolved effectively, conflict and its resolution can lead to personal and professional growth, and a more resilient workplace. 
Before you go into any difficult conversation, regardless of the cause, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What is the purpose of this conversation?  
  2. What do you hope to accomplish?
  3. What would be the ideal outcome?
  4. What assumptions are you making about this person’s intentions?
  5. What “buttons” of yours are being pushed? What about the employee’s “buttons?”
  6. Are either of you more emotional than the situation warrants?

The bottom line is you need to prepare. Yes, sometimes these conversations happen “on the fly” but you can still take 30 seconds to figure out at least one of the above questions.

Once you have a clear understanding of what you are looking to accomplish, and once you remove the emotion from the situation, you are able to look at the situation through the eyes of a leader and work towards a solution.

And above all, don’t ignore the situation. That is never healthy!
Want to prepare for a difficult conversation? Need a fresh perspective? Give me a call and let’s figure out the next steps!