How to Manage Interruptions in Meetings - Deepstash
How to Manage Interruptions in Meetings

How to Manage Interruptions in Meetings

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How to Manage Interruptions in Meetings

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Responding To Interruptions: Check Your Status

In a corporate setting, every meeting can be a competition for resources, recognition or rewards.

If a senior interrupts you, it would not be counted against you, but it is a peer who has interrupted you to dominate and boost their own presence, it can negatively impact your status.

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  • Understand why your peer has interrupted you, and it has a different agenda, like changing the topic or to get you to stop, you can make direct eye contact with the interrupter and speak up.
  • You can say you need to finish your point on this important topic so that everyone is informed.
  • If the objective of the interruption was to criticize you, you can say that any feedback is welcome after you have shared your perspective.
  • If a senior has interrupted you during the meeting, wait for it to end and go for a one-on-one to clear the matter.

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In case of serial interruptions, it can be difficult to keep your composure, but do not get rattled. If a peer is interrupting you continuously, try to focus on your message and resume talking after taking a deep breath.

If things start to become awkward, reach out to the person after the meeting and clarify yourself, and let it be known to them how their interrupting you made you feel. Seek feedback if required.

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  • Work cultures often encourage healthy debates and disagreements, so it is important to be aware of your company's existing culture.
  • Do not get hung up on something normal for others.
  • Before you interrupt, simply asking if you can interrupt what the other person is saying, can work wonders.

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  • How we interrupt matters and using the word ‘but’ is often the problem. Our brains only take a fraction of a second to process the meaning of a word and be offended by a wrongly perceived one.
  • Use the word ‘and’ or say that you would like to add something to what is being said, to sound collaborative and not frame the other's statement as invalid.

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