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How To Have Difficult Conversations At Work

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ashiraprossack1/2018/10/28/how-to-have-difficult-conversations-at-work/#139f295e10b7

forbes.com

How To Have Difficult Conversations At Work
All leaders have difficult conversations at some point in time, whether it's telling an employee they aren't getting a raise or a promotion, disciplining poor performance, or even firing someone. Having difficult conversations may never be easy, but there are ways to make those conversations both productive and as painless as possible.

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Be direct

Be direct

When having a difficult conversation, be direct and get to the point quickly.

Difficult conversations become even more difficult when the delivery is complicated.

Most of the time, the person you're talking to knows that a critique is coming, so rather than dancing around the subject, just get to it.

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Be specific

Be specific

The more clarity you can provide, the better the critique will be received during a difficult conversation.

Be honest and thorough with your feedback, and fully clarify why you're having the conversation. Offer as many concrete examples as possible so the person understands you're not just pulling things out of thin air. 

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Plan out the conversation

Plan out the conversation
Prepar for a difficut conversation in advance: think of what you’re going to say, as well as anticipate how the other person might react

The more prepared you are, the easier it will be to stay even tempered and not get flustered, and therefore deliver a more solid critique.

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Choose your words

Choose your words
You must outline the critique and the reason you’re having the conversation, but don’t stop there. You’ll also want to talk about the outcome you’d like to see.  

Illustrating what a positive outcome looks like gives the employee something solid to work towards, and helps them understand why they’re being disciplined.

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Offer a solution

Offer a solution

Clearly explain the reason for the conversation, the specific critique, and then offer suggestions to improve.

Even if the conversation is to fire an employee, you should still offer a suggestion that will help them improve in their next job.

Nothing is worse than delivering a critique and leaving it just at that. 

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Manage your emotions

Manage your emotions
Keep difficult conversations in an even tone and keep it professional. If you get emotional, so will the other person.

When emotions start to take over, remind yourself that the more in control you are of your emotions, the better you'll be able to deliver the message.

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Questions serve a double purpose

Questions serve a double purpose
Asking questions helps the participants to conversations process what’s happened and allows you to clarify and solidify details of the conversation. 

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

When having a difficult conversation, be direct and get to the point quickly. 

Difficult conversations become even more difficult when the delivery is complicated.

Most of t...

Be Direct

During a difficult conversation, be quick and direct. This is not the time for feedback techniques, as they will mask the point of the conversation and lessen its impact making it more difficult.

Often, the person knows that a critique is coming, so rather than dancing around the subject, just get to it. It’s better for both parts.

Be Specific

Be honest and thorough with your feedback, give examples and fully clarify why you're having the conversation.

The more clarity you can provide, the better the critique will be received.

6 more ideas

More Positive Than Negative Feedback

High-performing organizations deliver roughly five times as many positive statements (supportive, appreciative, encouraging) as negative ones (critical, disapproving, contradictory). That’s because...

Focus On The Positive Parts

We tend to focus on giving employees critical feedback. But, by focusing on their weaknesses, we only create competence. By focusing on their strengths, we create excellence.

Give equal measures of positive and negative feedback. We usually gloss over the strengths, but focus in great detail on the critical feedback. Add examples and details to your positive feedback.

Emphasize Collaboration

Be objective when you speak about a negative event. Rather than placing blame or evaluating the problematic situation, describe it and its consequences, and suggest acceptable alternatives.

Let People Talk First

Let others to talk about themselves first. Then, you’ll be able to sell yourself more naturally.

If they are interested in what you have to offer, you can naturally transition into a p...

Ask Good Questions That Show You’re Engaged

Ask at least one question before changing topic to show you’re engaged. Gathering details makes it more likely that you’ll be able to establish a connection with the other person or find a way you can lend a hand.

Prepare For A Conversation Without Being Creepy

Take a look at the person’s LinkedIn or Twitter account to get an idea of his tone, interests, etc. You’re always at an advantage when you know more about a person. It will be easier to relate to him and you might avoid awkward conversations.