Very quick one (about difficult conversations)

26th March 2024

Very quick one this week (and it’s very important)…

  • When you need to have a difficult conversation…
  • Remember the rule – where possible, go verbal; go early
  • In other words, go verbal – pick up the phone. Or have a chat. Don’t just put it in writing, to avoid the awkward conversation
  • And go early. Don’t let it stew. Don’t procrastinate. Yes, sometimes problems disappear over time. But also many get worse if we leave them
  • (This is why one of the rules of Crisis Management is “work out where this is going to end. And then get there first”)
  • It’s easy to convince ourselves that “go verbal, go early” isn’t the best course of action. Because – let’s face it – difficult conversations are… well, difficult. And it can feel better to hide behind writing and/or delay
  • But it’s often better to go verbal, go early
  • So just pick up the phone, and crack on!
  • (And if you feel you need something in writing – to protect yourself and/or them – do the writing afterwards. So agree everything verbally, and then send a short confirmatory note “we’ve just agreed XYZ. Please let me know if you disagree” etc)

With any advice about difficult conversations, there is no Golden Rule That Always Works.

But “go verbal, go early” is often the best advice.

Do you do this?

Action Point

You know that difficult conversation you’ve been dreading?

Consider “go verbal, go early”.

And, if you think that’s your best option, do it today!

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