Organisations rely on the free flow of information between employees, teams and departments. And yet, concerns about our how we’re perceived by others can sometimes stifle this flow. For example, it can be difficult for us to have challenging conversations if we fear that our relationships will be eroded by them. The important question for leaders is, ’how can I confidently engage in courageous conversations with my team?
The answer to this question lies in our ability to give messages directly whilst listening and supporting those that we are in dialogue with. Leaders who create a culture where openness and honesty are valued and expected, benefit significantly. They leverage the power of feedback, embed an ethical code and create a shared view of what is acceptable and desirable behaviour – turning challenging conversations into action.
People will be more open to challenging conversations than we think! Even though significantly more people tend to avoid giving negative feedback than positive feedback, nearly twice as many people prefer receiving negative feedback than positive feedback.
(HBR study 2015)
During this session, we’ll help you to understand what’s stopping you from having ‘courageous conversations’ within your organisation. We’ll provide you with strategies to prepare for and practise challenging conversations. And, we’ll review the skills of performance feedback, ‘pushing back’ and communicating clearly with stakeholders at different levels of seniority.
Organisations that prioritise openness benefit from an increase in trusting relationships whilst simultaneously
improving speed and efficiency. But being open and honest can feel uncomfortable for most of us, so how
will your organisation:
- Create the climate for performance?
- Ensure that the conversations that need to be had are actually taking place?
- Build a culture where feedback is given openly and regularly?
- Prioritise honesty and transparency across the business, regardless of politics, power or status?
During this ½ day workshop, we’ll work with leaders to build confidence in their ability to have challenging
conversations at work. You will:
- Explore the mindset that is required to have a challenging conversation and in particular the role of leadership vulnerability and courage.
- Have a better understanding of their own fears and blockers to having challenging conversations.
- Take part in a variety of practical exercises to help illustrate our four-step model for challenging conversations: Imagine, Prepare, Practise, Refine.
- Prepare for and practise having difficult conversations that need to happen back in your real work context.
An openness to have challenging conversations provides measurable outcomes for you and your organisation, including:
- Improved relationships and greater levels of collaboration and trust.
- Less indirect or unhelpful discourse – bringing with it clearer goals and greater efficiencies.
- A clearer and shared understanding of what ‘acceptable’ behaviour looks like.
Read the article: Challenging Conversations
As leaders we know that being able to have effective challenging conversations is important and often the more senior we get, the more important these conversations become. Issues with direct reports, peers and managers come up and need to be addressed but often we choose to delay these conversations or not have them at all.
You are always welcome to contact us for advice on which course or programme will suit your needs the best.