I sometimes struggle when talking to someone about a difficult situation. I’m not sure what to say or how to say it. It doesn’t have to be business-related either. I was recently faced with a situation where I needed talk to someone about a difficult situation, and I needed to shift from being challenging to cooperative.
I decided to use some basic steps to help me transform being overwhelmed and anxious into empowerment.
First I said “we need to talk,” stated the purpose of the meeting and then made a positive intention. Next I stated the issue and asked questions. This would give me an idea of what the other person knew, or was thinking. I’ve found that their responses can be very different from what I heard or observed.
After this discussion, we could then explore solutions that would benefit everyone. Putting the ball in the other persons court, so to speak, helps them come up with solutions and feel that their thoughts and ideas really do mean a lot in finding an amicable solution.
The last steps were to define and confirm what was discussed, explore what options would be good to pursue and set a time-frame to meet again and re-evaluate.
While I don’t look forward to having difficult conversations, I know that with practice, the right words and questions will come easier and I won’t feel so anxious when I have to say, we need to talk.