Articles & Publications

By Tal Shnall |
Published: May 17, 2013

The following is an excerpt:

difficult-conversationsEven though communication is the lifeblood of any organization, it’s difficult to find a company that doesn’t have its breakdowns in this area. Part of a leader’s job is to keep these to a minimum and handle effectively.

In reality, most people avoid conflicts and the confrontations required to deal with them not because they lack the will, but because they lack courage to overcome that fear of “what if” and the potential of something unproductive.

No one is immune to workplace tensions- It is inevitable that you will have some challenging conversations with colleagues or customers.

When we need to have a difficult conversation with someone—we always have that gut feeling of resistance. Fear and contemplation drowns that inner voice and we put the conversation off.

Meanwhile the other person continues to provide substandard performance, miss deadlines, engage in interpersonal conflicts and contributes to a toxic culture.

The consequence of not having that uncomfortable conversation is costly.

A  recent study by Accenture revealing that, even in this challenging economic climate, 35 percent of employees leave their jobs voluntarily because of internal politics and conflict.

Judith E Glaser in her recent book about Conversational Intelligence says that, “…confronting another person with difficult conversations brings up potentially volatile emotions, so we move with caution and keep our real feelings close to our chest. In the most extreme cases, when we are faced with situations that stir up highly charged emotional content, most of the tension and drama is actually taking place in our own minds. “



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