7 Ways to Learn From Difficult Conversations
Uncomfortable encounters can actually help open the door for growth. August 9, 2019 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Over the last generation, companies have committed huge sums of time and money into people development, and yet the same disruptive behavior penetrates business culture. Whether it’s the rise of the digital world, the increase in virtual and remote teams or the public naming and shaming that happens across social-platforms, people are opting to jump ship instead of working through challenges. Fears about retribution or rejection often prevent people from speaking up at work, and according to Vital Smarts, every conversation failure costs an organization, on average, $7,500. While many leaders are comfortable being responsible for multi-million-dollar budgets, the thought of handling an employee’s unpleasant emotional reaction can produce enough anxiety to keep such dialogue at bay. After all, feelings can get messy. But not having these conversations creates a leadership gap that impacts morale, retention and bottom line. When you avoid courageous conversations, ripples are created that impede growth. In other words, bring people on board for difficult conversations may cause turbulence, but they’re also inevitable, so here are seven ways to land safely with all passengers intact. Related: The Power of Uncomfortable Conversations Bypass Ego People often wait until an interpersonal situation requires Navy Seal-worthy extraction before addressing it, but the more you avoid conflict, the more emotionally charged it becomes. Intersecting a pattern of behavior upon first sight is more proactive than the point-of-no-return method. Open, honest and transparent conversations shortly after an issue has arisen is a habit you’ll want to build. Practice makes conversations more comfortable to tackle in the future. Preparation Is King It’s essential to spend time planning responses to potentially challenging situations that don’t go according to plan. Outright scripted conversation can