Five Tips For Success With Tough Conversations #508

by Sue Hawkes

Ever been stuck approaching a challenging conversation? 

You know the kind, it’s one you’d rather put off than have, could be personal or professional, but it’s one you play over and over in your head to rehearse before approaching it. Me too! 

What works? Here are 5 ways to make it easier: 

  1. If you do well with getting thoughts on paper, write it out and extract main points. 
  1. As you plan for the conversation, think about what you want as a result. Now think of what the other person would want. Begin with common ground, there is always some overlap between what you and they want. 
  1. Role play. I know, I know, it gets a bad rap like Nickelback, but it works. When you’ve said something before, even if one time, you can work out the bugs and will be more at ease for the real thing. 
  1. If you’re uncomfortable, say so. Begin your conversation with letting the other person know this is a challenging thing for you to do and then say it. Be as direct and succinct as you can, kind, not nice (see blog #507). 
  1. Be authentic. I’m not being all new age here – be YOU. Don’t look for a recipe or the right words. Speak in a way that is genuine and sincere – the words you use will be secondary. 
Sue HawkesFive Tips For Success With Tough Conversations #508