Does the thought of dealing with conflict or difficult conversations leave you feeling anxious and stressed? Conflict is an inevitable part of living and working closely with others and is very rarely actually fully resolved. However, it can be successfully MANAGED. This leads to productive, successful and long lasting relationships.
True functional (contrary too dysfunctional) conflict or conversation is the life blood of building trust and transparency in a relationship which then enhances honest interaction in the future.
Whether you have concerns about dealing with a dysfunctional team at work which managers are failing to address or an issue on a personal level, we can help with a practical framework.
Rob can give you strategies to move forward productively, working with individuals on a one to one basis through coaching and mentoring or with groups delivering bespoke, interactive seminars and work-shops. Using relevant, practical case studies and real life experiences you will have the confidence to move forward with issues.
Learn to manage your emotions and influence the feelings of others when faced with difficult conversations or potential areas of conflict.
Prepare for addressing the conversation or issue. This involves so much more than just logistics like timing or location. Often people tell me they have planned and prepared for the meeting but in reality, all they have done is THINK about it. I think about losing weight all the time. However, it’s not until I devise a meal plan, design my workouts, and take in to account potential distractions that I feel more committed and confident about taking the next step. So the P aspect of conversation management covers planning of appropriate questions, building in strategies for managing your emotions and formulating influencing techniques for dealing with possible responses by the other person including anger, withdrawal or physical threat.
ACTION your plan. This means taking ACTION. It covers being assertive and not aggressive. How to set up the meeting or conversation, and creating the right environment to be professional.
Understand the issues involved. So often we treat the symptoms and don’t dig deep enough to find the cause. This requires a good combination of coaching skills including active listening, use of silence, picking up on emotional cues and dealing with the emotions of others. It also takes in managing your own emotions so that you stay in control of the conversation and don’t allow it to be sabotaged by the other person.
Select a way to move forward or if appropriate agree an action plan for the future.
Evaluation. This reflection should look at the process (logistics, timing etc), the other persons part in it and their responses and finally evaluating the most important bit - YOUR part in it. This is the part where you analyze what you can learn and change in the future. What did you do well? What could you have said or delivered better? Which of your responses would you do differently next time? This honest and balanced self-reflection is a great skill which needs to be learned and nurtured. However, this evaluation process can be a powerful tool for you gain confidence to deal with further issues or concerns in the future.
Using the P.A.U.S.E. © conversation management framework you will feel confident as you move through each phase.