5 Ways To Handle Difficult Conversations With Your Team 

Waiting for a difficult conversation with team members? Many leaders learn different tactics, try to remain emotionally calm during negotiations, and demonstrate loyalty to their team members. However, during negotiations, many may encounter the fact that in response, they can get an unfriendly attitude and also the intention to disrupt some important process. So how you negotiate correctly without falling into such a trap? It is worth remembering that the essence of negotiations is to find a compromise. But reaching a compromise is not the easiest task in many situations. However, there are 5 tips that will help you handle difficult conversations with ease and find mutually winning solutions.

Define the Core Issue

For your negotiations to be successful, the first step is to properly prepare for them. If you start negotiations without understanding the key points, then it will be extremely difficult to make a decision. That is, you need to set the following points:

  • Key issue. Identify the central issue that caused the controversy. In doing so, you can find out in advance what your team thinks and why it is regarded as a problem.
  • Team’s point of view. In any disagreement, there are several points of view. You need to know in advance the opinion of both parties. This will help you to predict the actions of the other person, a pre-prepared plan will help you with this. So you can smoothly bring the interlocutor to the right question and give a clear answer to it.
  • The optimal outcome for the team. After receiving information on the above points, you can get an understanding of what can be an optimal solution, and arrive at a compromise for all members of your team.

After you answer the above points, you will have an action plan for your negotiations. Such basic information will give a good idea of ​​how to properly organise complex negotiations and more importantly, how to get the desired outcome of the negotiations. Understanding the core issue is necessary not only to prepare for negotiations, but it is also worth staying within their framework throughout the conversation. Otherwise, there is a risk of switching attention to the other problems of your team, but it’s the issue of the other negotiations.

Be Honest

How do you make problem negotiations less problematic? All you have to do is tell the truth since this is one of the obvious factors that can affect the success of any negotiation. If you start negotiations with a lie, then counting on a positive outcome of the negotiations is not the best idea.

The truth is something that will give understanding to all participants in the negotiations, and some situations can dramatically change the point of view of team members. Also, when a person understands that the CEO is open and honest, then on a psychological level, it inspires confidence. Therefore, in this way, you can sum up the desired outcome of negotiations for all members of your team and get agreement on controversial issues.

Let Everyone Share Their Opinion

Complex negotiations often mean that the team will be divided into groups of people with a different opinion. As you know, such parties create an obvious difficulty in making a decision. So how can you smooth the situation and find the optimal solution? It is necessary to give the opportunity to share the opinion to each member of the team.

An important point in negotiations is that each participant should be able to express their opinion. This is one of the factors for the successful communication of team members. At the same time, it is necessary to help the interlocutor develop a thought if they did not explain something or preferred not to specifically dwell on some point. This is the easiest way to find a possible solution to the problem that can satisfy the needs of all team members.

Also, at this stage, to achieve understanding, you need to sum up the intermediate results. This will also help participants see that the conversation has gone off-topic and needs to get back to the main question.

It is also worth remembering that sometimes it is worth taking a break. This will help all negotiators ease some of tension and rethink all the nuances before returning to the negotiations.

Look for a Middle Ground

Once you’ve allowed everyone to share their opinions about a problem or situation, it’s time to think about a solution that will satisfy all team members. The middle ground is the logical outcome of every negotiation.

However, it is important to understand that it will be impossible to please everyone. But when this is compensated by some specific points, then it will be much easier for team members to make such a decision. When we are talking about difficult conversations, it is impossible to please all the team members. So, a middle ground is what can help in such situations.

Provide Feedback

After you come to an agreement, you should definitely gather feedback. Summarise your negotiations. This will help to sum up everything and create a strategy to solve the problem.

Also, it is vital to provide an opportunity for feedback and also share a rough plan of how you will solve the problem situation with the team. Negotiations should not end solely with a decision. Your team needs to know about the implementation plan to fix the problem situation. This will make your negotiations as effective as possible.


So now you know what you can do to make complicated conversations less difficult. Don’t leave preparations for negotiations to the last day. Preparation is an opportunity to manage negotiations tightly. Use the above tips to turn complex negotiations into an easier task.

Author: Christine Tomas – Tech Expert, Consultant, and Writer, Howly.

Photo credit: StartupStockPhotos from Pixabay

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