Difficult Conversations Coming?….HELP!

One word that would describe me is that I am always nice/loving (okay maybe two words) to people, but at times “too nice” is what I have heard from other friends and family.  Sometimes I let people push their way in or let things slide that i know are not always the best possible solution. My problem is that I can’t be mean to people. It is a disability. I don’t want to hurt their feelings.  That is why one of my biggest fears is to have to fire someone in my future.  What do I do? Where do I start the conversation? I know it has to be done but how do I do this without hurting them too much?

It is always a difficult thing to have these conversations with people. Even though I have not been in the workforce long and have not even come close to firing someone or telling them something they need to fix, it still daunts me that I will have to fire someone one day.  There conversations are difficult and that is why I am going to share some information that I found on a course called “Dealing With Difficult Conversations” on NewsU.org that I took.  With this course I learned a lot about what to say, how to act, and what to do after the situation.

What do I say to them?

In a nutshell, the course said that if you are planning on firing or if it is a very serious topic DO NOT beat around the bush, if you know what i mean.  Get straight to the point and then talk about what they can do from here.  If they aren’t fired then talk about what they can improve on or if they are no longer with the company then you can send them to human resources and they can help them with their career.

One last main point is to never go based on assumptions. Always state the facts.

How are you supposed to act during the conversation?

Well, you want to be polite of course because that is what we Christians are to do, so don’t text or be on the computer is one thing.  Another point that the course made was to be in a private area without a lot of noise.  Sit out from behind the desk and don’t fold your arms are two more important things.

Also, the more serious the conversation the more witnesses you should have just in case it gets a little ugly.

How do you end it?

Make sure that the employee understands what you said and it is clear to them.  If they are still with the company, recap and set goals and next steps for you and them.

What do you do after the conversation happens?

Schedule another meeting to talk about how they are doing if they are still with the company.  Or you can make notes and give it to them.

Well these were just a few things from this course that I learned and I think they will help me tremendously in difficult conversations and I hope they help you too!


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