People know when a tough conversation is about to be had. They can smell it.
Taking time to prepare for your tough conversation or feedback session makes all the difference in preserving, and even improving, your relationships and getting the best outcomes for your team and the business. Reflecting on what you need to say, and how you need to say it, before you actually say it, makes all the difference. Preparation also allows you to stay focused when you are in the conversation. So let's understand what we need to reflect on.
I am a complete believer in Susan Scott's structure for starting conversations in Fierce Conversations. Let's look at this as a way to structure conversations to foster strong relationships, improve outcomes and boost the performance of those around you.
It's a good way to start the conversation. It should only take a minute (as it's just the starter). If done correctly it can stop conversations from becoming larger or smaller than they need to be.
Take a few minutes to recall someone that you respect in your life and the characteristics of that relationship. What makes them someone you respect? What do they say or do to earn that place? ...