I was really looking forward to having a good conversation today. Against the backdrop of so much angst and aggravation it felt good to give some positive and practical guidance about having one-to-one conversations that actually address matters and allow solutions to come to the surface. I think this is particularly important at time when so many employers will be having difficult conversations or facing challenging situations with team members.
These conversations are based on the principles of listen to acknowledge not to fix which requires an active listening capability to reflect back the words and sentiments that have been used in conversations; to create an environment where someone is heard and where they can hear themselves and where the pace of the conversation is supportive.
Watch the role plays in the webinar and listen out for:
- Who is doing the talking?
- The importance of acknowledging what the other person is saying
- Showing authentic interest in the person
- Reflecting language
- Future focus on – what would you be noticing?
- Setting expectations – timing, ownership
- Non-judgemental language
- Solutions focused
In the second scenario there is a clever use of a sliding scale which recognises that life is not black and white, it is often shades of colour and it encourages us to make a judgement for ourselves about where we are in the continuum and how we could shift our position. Importantly the scenario acknowledges that changes need to happen; normalises the challenges and allows the person to suggest and find ways to make improvements. In contrast to either avoiding the situation; offering harsh or critical feedback and demands to what needs to change. The more coaching style to offering feedback rests on the identification of observed behaviour, sharing and acknowledging the behaviour and the space to find ways of addressing.
In both scenarios the tone of the conversations was positive and constructive. Both individuals took ownership of their personal responsibility. They then found a way forward and the opportunity to revisit the issue agreed. Both conversations took 5 – 10 minutes to complete – no time at all in the overall scheme of things!
If you would like support or more information to help you to have authentic conversations, allow you to exercise your management responsibilities or be able to reach out to your team members when times are tough, please do contact us to find out how we can make that happen.
You can watch the full webinar here.