Having Powerful Conversations
It was a real pleasure to be given the opportunity to speak at the BWN (Business Women’s Network) in Colchester last week. The group was lively, interactive and hungry to learn. The subject matter was not about how to sell or gain business, but use both your cognitive and emotional skills to structure a conversation to ensure a positive outcome. When we have the conversations it is important that we use our EI to read the situation as it develops, and not to get emotional ourselves. We call it, “Staying above the line”. It is too easy to get sucked into the other persons story, or lose our ability to think rationally in a way that will get us to the positive outcome we desire. This is not necessarily coaching, but the skills are similar. The key difference is that we are not facilitating, but we are the driver, and they are the receiver, but of course we are still aiming for a win-win, be authentic and maintain trust. It is important for us to maintain structure in the conversation with clear steps, but also recognise the fact that a lot of our choices are driven by fear or value, and the same applies to the person we are conversing with. It is also critical to be aligned on expectations right from the start, as that is the only way there will be a positive outcome.
Fundamentally if you are going to have a conversation where it will push you out of your comfort zone and you must have a positive outcome, plan it, and even role play it with others.