Dealing with interpersonal conflict – constructive and destructive behaviours and approaches

Don’t Play Chinese Whispers in Difficult Conversations!

“I know you think you understand what you thought I said but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant” (Alan Greenspan, American Economist)  It’s so easy to mishear and misunderstand what others are saying to us and vice verse, particularly when tensions are starting to rise. Here’s a simple…

Emails…Are you Trigger Happy? Read this Before You Press ‘Send’

In the late eighties I taught in Germany on a two-year Business English programme. One of the course handbooks focused solely on writing business letters in English. The students were schooled in great detail on the etiquette and nuances of letters and memos in a variety of business contexts. These ranged from sales to commissioning…

Are you in ‘Parent’, ‘Child’ or ‘Adult’ Mode (or all 3!) at Work?

“But what if you needed to give her a telling off…” This was the comment of a participant in a recent ‘Difficult Conversations’ training session with a group of managers. The discussion was around the room layout and whether the manager should sit behind a desk or not, when giving negative feedback to an employee.…

All Conflict Leads Us Back To Ourselves

All Conflict Leads Us Back To Ourselves. Many years ago I worked quite closely with another colleague. Overall, we had a pretty good working relationship, but some disagreements also as to how things should be done and what the best course of action was to take. I remember clearly at times finding those disagreements quite difficult:…