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Handling Negative Situations: Part 2

Last week we talked about ways to handle negative situations in the workplace. Unpleasant situations are bound to arise from time to time; the way you handle these situations can make or break your professional relationships. Today we’ll discuss a few more ideas for handling these kinds of situations in the most professional way possible.

Use “I Statements”: When you find yourself in a conflict with a colleague, watch how you phrase your sentences. Focusing your message on what the other person has done wrong will put them on the defense. Instead, focus on your reaction. This is easier than it sounds: each time you find yourself about to start a statement with “You”, take a second to rephrase and begin with “I”. For example, rather than saying, “You clearly didn’t prepare for the presentation. Your performance was extremely disappointing,” you might say, “I was somewhat disappointed in your presentation today. I usually see a much higher caliber of work in your performance.”

Lead with a Compliment: This tactic is useful when you need to offer criticism, but don’t want it to create a negative relationship. When voicing your displeasure, preface the criticism with a compliment to help keep the situation positive. For example, if you have an employee who is spending too much time socializing at work, you may approach the situation like this: “I really appreciate the way you get along so well with your colleagues, and I like that you take the time to get to know them. However, I’m concerned that the time you spend conversing at the water cooler is affecting your productivity.”

Next week we’ll conclude our series on handling negative situations. Stay tuned for more great tricks and tips! Do you have first-hand experience diffusing a tricky situation in the workplace? Share your story in our comments section.

Do you want to improve your communication skills and learn how to make the most of your professional interactions? Give us a call at 212-308-7725 or visit us on the web at www.corporatespeechsolutions.com and let our team of corporate speech-language pathologists help you turn your speech into your most powerful professional tool. Don’t live in NYC? No problem! Our services are Skype ready, so CSS can help you improve your communication from anywhere in there world.

Don’t forget: March 14 CSS Founder and President, Jayne Latz, will be giving a presentation for the American Business Women’s Association on Communicating with Power, Purpose, and Confidence. Don’t miss this exciting opportunity: check our events page for details! http://www.corporatespeechsolutions.com/events/communicating-power-purpose-confidence/