Difficult Conversations

Having difficult conversations is an inevitable part of any workplace.

Whether it's addressing poor performance, asking for or giving critical feedback, or discussing sensitive topics, learning how to have difficult conversations is essential for personal and professional growth. The benefits of overcoming the awkwardness to navigate these conversations with confidence can't be understated.

  1. Improved Communication Skills:

Effective communication is the cornerstone of a successful workplace. By learning how to have difficult conversations, individuals can improve their communication skills, leading to more productive and positive interactions in the workplace.

  1. Increased Confidence:

Many people dread having difficult conversations at work because they fear the unknown. They may worry about the other person's reaction or how the conversation will affect their professional relationship. However, learning how to have difficult conversations can increase confidence levels and reduce anxiety. Knowing how to navigate these conversations with skill and diplomacy can empower individuals to speak up and address issues proactively.

  1. Personal and Professional Growth:

When individuals address issues in a timely and effective manner, they can create a more positive and productive work environment. Additionally, these conversations can lead to increased self-awareness and a better understanding of others' perspectives. By navigating challenging conversations with grace and professionalism, individuals can develop important leadership skills that will serve them well throughout their careers.

  1. Improved Relationships:

Having difficult conversations at work can be uncomfortable, but they are necessary to maintain positive relationships with colleagues and superiors. When issues are left unaddressed, they can fester and lead to resentment, mistrust and conflict. By learning how to have difficult conversations, individuals can work to resolve conflicts in a timely and productive manner, leading to stronger and more positive relationships.

  1. Increased Productivity:

Difficult conversations can be time-consuming and emotionally taxing. However, by learning how to navigate them effectively, people can save time and increase productivity in the workplace. Addressing issues in a timely manner can prevent them from escalating and taking up more time and resources later on.

  1. Reduced Turnover:

Unresolved conflicts can lead to high turnover rates, as employees may feel frustrated or unsupported. Learning how to have difficult conversations can help prevent issues from escalating and causing employees to leave. By addressing problems head-on, employees can feel heard and supported, leading to higher job satisfaction and reduced turnover rates.

Learning Objectives:

  • How the physical environment impacts conversation outcomes from the start
  • Understanding how different communication styles tend to affect conversation
  • Understanding and overcoming the anxiety around difficult conversations
  • Impact on the individual, the team, and the organization 
  • Organization-specific issues will be addressed with respect and empathy

Take-Away Strategies & Tools:

  • Meeting courtesies templates
  • How to ask for and prepare for difficult conversations
  • Scripts and strategies to keep conversations on track, and to ensure their effectiveness
  • How to manage conversations that go sideways
  • Follow up strategies to ensure clarity, and to maintain trust

Additional Information:

  • This talk has been developed for leaders and their teams
  • Standard length is 60-75 minutes, but this can be extended into a half- or full-day workshop with skill-building activities, breakout groups, role plays, and case studies
  • This session is available for virtual or for in-person delivery
  • Client will be responsible for speaker travel costs, plus a per diem over and above the speaker fee
  • Need additional tailoring of content, or a fully customized session?  We're here for you. Book a free needs assessment today so we can uncover exactly what you need and how we can help
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