Difficult Conversations: The Basics and Beyond

Formats: 8-hour virtual course  |  2-day instructor-led onsite

We all have difficult conversations, no matter how confident or competent we are. And, too often, no matter what we try, things don’t go well. Should you say what you’re thinking and risk possible conflict? Swallow your views and feel like a doormat? Or should you really let them have it? But, what if you’re wrong? This interactive 2-day workshop shows you how to handle even the toughest conversations more effectively and with less anxiety.

Learning Objectives »

  • Examine the challenges of difficult conversations.
  • Effectively prepare for difficult conversations.
  • Eliminate anxiety and overcome avoidance.
  • Give bad news with clarity and professionalism.
  • Defuse anger and ego during difficult discussions.
  • Provide a framework for mutual contribution.
  • Expand or contract the intensity according.

Course Agenda »

The Hard Talk

  1. What so Hard about the Hard Talk?
  2. Defining Difficult Conversations
  3. The Missing Conversation
  4. Road Blocks to Effective Conversations

Four Conversations

  1. The “Feelings” Conversation
  2. The “What Happened” Conversation
  3. The Contribution System Map
  4. The “Identity” Conversation
  5. The “What’s Next” Conversation

Hard Talk Road Map

  1. Preparing for the Conversation
  2. Directional Dialogue
  3. Making Agreements
  4. Self-Regulation

Difficult Conversation Strategies

  1. Strategies for Difficult Conversations
  2. Giving Feedback
  3. Stand in the “And”
  4. Receiving Feedback
  5. Assigning Meaning
  6. The “Identity” Issue
  7. The “Feelings” Issue
  8. Use I Language Not You Language
  9. Creating Shared Meaning
  10. Seeing the Third Story
  11. Using Questions to Gain Perspective
  12. Handling Gossip
  13. Asking for Change
  14. Making Decisions