Tips on how to cope better with the stress and emotions of conflict and disputes

How do you listen if someone is upset, annoyed and off-loading on you?

Listening is a much-lauded but greatly under-used skill – and not because we don’t know how to listen well.  Instead, it’s that so easily fall into the trap of trying to ‘fix’ the situation rather than taking the time to let a person talk (and think it) through and in doing that, find their own way…

Difficult Conversation? Don’t Forget Your Oxygen Mask

Difficult Conversation? Don’t Forget Your Oxygen Mask! You’re sitting in an aeroplane with your three year old son. Suddenly, the plane starts to jolt and rock. You feel dizzy, it’s hard to breathe. The little boy starts wheezing and crying with pain. You can feel panic rising. From above oxygen masks drop down. Grabbing one…

Powerful Questions to help Managers prepare for ‘Difficult Conversations’

“Er..um John, I need to talk to you about..something…” Of all of the situations I have been hired to work on over the past decade, the majority of them related to a breakdown in relationships between a manager and a member of their team. Somewhere along the lines, difficult conversations have lived up to their…

How Conflict Competent Are Staff in Your Organisation?

When I ask people in training courses and workshops to cite some images or associations they have with the concept of ‘conflict’, I usually get a whole list of negatives (angry, war, hate, stress…) and very few positives. ‘I don’t like conflict’ is a common refrain, so I do my best to avoid it’. Yet…