Holding Tough Conversations – Part 2

PeopleTalkingLast month’s newsletter focused on the most fundamental step for holding tough conversations, which is deciding whether or not to have the conversation in the first place. This can be determined by asking “what will happen if this issue continues and is not resolved?” If the consequences are severe, then it’s time to start preparing for holding a tough conversation.

The next step is to identify your intent and desired results. What is your purpose for having this conversation? Is it to improve the relationship, improve performance, stop an unwanted behavior, etc.? The purpose should never be to blame or shame another person, as that usually backfires and results in damaging (or further damaging) the relationship. If the intent is to be helpful, then both parties should walk away with the relationship intact or in a better state than before they engaged in the tough conversation. What do you hope to accomplish by holding this dialogue? In other words, what do you specifically want to be different as a result of this conversation – what will the other person be doing or not doing as a result?

We tend to get what we expect. Therefore, by being clear on your intent and desired results, you set yourself up for a greater chance of success, and you will be better prepared for what to say when you actually have the tough conversation.

Stayed tuned for future newsletters which will cover each of the next steps in detail to help you be more prepared and effective in holding difficult conversations.

 We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior.”– Stephen M.R. Covey, The Speed of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything

 “Begin with the end in mind.”– Dr. Stephen R. Covey

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