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How To Have A Hard Conversation

How To Have A Hard Conversation

  1. Remember showing up imperfectly is better than not showing up of all.  Avoiding the hard conversations ensures comfort.  Confronting them invites growth.  Which do you value more?
  2. Define key terms being discussed in the hard conversation. If your colleague is not putting in enough effort…What does ‘enough’ mean to you? If it’s regarding performance at work, how does your boss define ‘productivity’? Often our conflicts are fueled by miscommunication more than anything else. 
  3. Replace judgement with curiosity.  Curiosity turns an argument into a conversation.  Instead of rushing to make your point, urge for more clarification.  Replace rebuttals with, “I want to fully understand. Can you explain that to me a bit more?”
  4. Allow room for silence.  Even if it’s uncomfortable. Silence to process is better than speaking just to speak.  This also gives the other person the opportunity to fully finish their thought.
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