E6 – How to Have Tough Conversations at Work [solo episode]

Welcome to another episode of the No More Reasonable Doubt show.  This show is designed to help empower young professionals of color to have more impact a work.

Today’s episode is a solo episode, meaning it’s just me.  We are going to talk about having tough conversations at work.  Just a few days ago we had a tragic shooting at a church in Charleston, SC and there is no doubt that this may be something that comes up at work.  

Listen in:

Well how do you handle tough or sensitive conversations at work?

There is the just don’t talk about it although I can tell it’s on everyone’s mind approach. 

I’ve been there and I’ve also watched it handled masterfully.  

You say, “I’m sorry but I have to get this off my chest.”  You say what you have to say, you add an open ended question at the end and you invite others in.

There is the take the lead approach,

“did you hear about what happen?  It’s a tragedy.  I have no doubt that others are going to want to talk about it, let’s make space to do so.”  

Note that my perspective is one of a someone who has been a manager for 8 years so I think about the bigger group.  But you don’t have to be a manager to lead.  In fact it has more impact if you are not a manager.  Go ahead and touch base with management and / or HR if you have to, but don’t hesitate to have a designated space (lunch time, a conference room) to have discussions for those who want to. 

The Jerk at Work

Now, on the other side you may have an insensitive co-worker who decides it’s a good time to make jokes or just be a jerk about a particular situation.  

It’s ok to have fun at work but you need to create safe words that let people know, “this ain’t the time or place so chill out.  We can come back to our regularly scheduled program in a few days.”

Tough conversations are part of life and of work so I hope the information above sparks ideas to make it a little bit easier for you to have those conversations.  

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No More Reasonable Doubt is on a mission to turn young professionals of color from invisible to invincible.  We got you.

Thanks for listening. Peace.  

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