Dec 26, 2012

3 Simple Words That Will Help You Have That Difficult Conversation

Do you dread or totally avoid difficult conversations?  Many people do.  But they are necessary at times. 

You can improve your ability to have difficult conversations.  In fact, here's 3 simple words that can help you navigate even the most tense situations.

State the FACT.

Share how it makes you FEEL.

Explain what you'd like to change or adjust in the FUTURE.

Here's an example of using these three words.
You have a volunteer that is being brash and rude to parents when they come to pick up their kids. You've received several complaints.  You know you need to have a conversation with the person.

(state the fact) John, I've had several parents say you are rude to them when they come to pick up their child.  I stood by the door last week when parents were picking up and I did notice you were abrupt with several parents.

(share how it makes you feel) When you do this, it makes parents feel like you don't care about them or value them.  And it makes me feel like we're treating them as a bother instead of the blessing they are.

(explain what you'd like to change or adjust in the FUTURE) In the future, I'd like to encourage you to be more loving with your words and tone.  I know your heart.  You love kids and parents.  That's why are you serving.  I think sometimes it just gets lost in translation when you are under stress.

If you'll allow me, I'd like to invest in you and help you improve your people skills.  I have a great book that has helped me that I'd be glad to share with you.  I'd also like to spend some time with you in the next few weeks working on this.

Try using this approach when your next difficult situation arises.  It will give you confidence going into the conversation.

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