advantages of using external consultants

How to Have a Difficult Conversation with a Team Member

I was speaking to a VIP client last week about an issue they were having with a new team member.

The team member in question had slept through her alarm and as a result missed an important team training session, which had been scheduled weeks before.

Now in years gone by my original response would have been to call the team member into my office and lay down the law.

You know the script:

If this happens again you will be out of here faster than you can imagine

You may have used this direct attack model in the past.

However, I was at a recent event with my great friend Steve Jensen, where he shared a different communication strategy for dealing with conflict.

Steve called it the “Open Ended Combo

In this strategy Steve suggests you use a combination of “What” and “How” questions in an attempt to get the team member to solve the problem for themselves.

So in the situation above with the sleepy head team member – Steve suggested you simply ask them a series of “What” and “How” questions such as:

“What led to you missing the team training?”

“How can you make sure this does not happen again?”

“What sort of impression does this leave with me and your fellow team members?”

“How can you make it up to them and to me?

The absolute beauty of the “Open Ended Combo” is this discussion becomes totally NON JUDGMENTAL.

The team member solves their own problem and all you are doing is asking a series of questions.

Now if the sleepy team member misses another training session or is late for work you may have to have a more direct conversation.

However, this softer strategy is a great way to deal with an early issue with a new team member or a situation which may have just been a one off event.

I loved the “Open Ended Combo” and suggest you give it a try in your health business.

I hope this helps.

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