When You’re Better Off Skipping a Difficult Conversation
Every leader needs to give negative feedback to their employees. But not every conversation needs to happen immediately — or at all. To determine whether you can avoid the conversation, ask yourself a few questions: If I have this conversation, what will I realistically achieve? Do I tend to look for problems in this individual? How committed am I to being “right”? Is there a reasonable solution that I can offer? What is my role in this situation? If your answers indicate that the situation will likely be resolved on its own, that you intervening is not necessary, that you’re more focused on being right than listening, or that it isn’t the right time to bring up the issue, then don’t schedule the meeting. By choosing which conversations not to have, you’re making sure the messages you do communicate are delivered for the right reasons and generate the desired results.