TOP 5 MISTAKES THAT WE MAKE WHEN HAVING DIFFICULT CONVERSATIONS
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Research suggests that managers spend up to a third of their time having difficult conversations with employees – but they’re regularly cited as one of the things they dislike the most about their job.
We’ve picked out five of the most common mistakes that we make when having a difficult conversation – and some handy tips on how to avoid them.
1. Mistake #1: We fall into a combat mentality
When difficult conversations go wrong, it's often because we've gone into combat mode and see the conversation as a battle that we’ve got to win. So set aside the battle fatigues and start looking for solutions.
2. Mistake #2: We oversimplify the problem
If the problem you’re facing was straightforward, then chances are you wouldn’t be where you are now. Take the time to dig a little deeper and get to grips with the real issues.
3. Mistake #3: We don't have enough respect
Don’t be tempted to trivialize matters or dismiss the person’s feelings just because you wouldn’t react in the same way. Always try to respect the person and the problem.
4. Mistake #4: We let our emotions get the better of us
Emotions like fear, anger or embarrassment can easily derail a conversation. So always keep your cool, state what you really want and focus on the outcome you want to achieve.
5. Mistake #5: We over-rehearse
If we think a conversation is going to be difficult, we tend to start rehearsing what we’re going to say. So while some preparation is a good thing, try to resist the temptation to plan too much – the conversation may well take you by surprise.
Learn how to turn that tough talk into a constructive dialogue with Dealing with difficult conversations from Skill Boosters.