A difficult conversation well handled

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This is one of two Sticky Stories illustrating the same difficult conversation, handled in two different ways. In this story an emotional conversation between an upset business manager and an internal IT manager is gradually diffused, with a mutually acceptable result and a commitment to action at the conclusion. This story is useful for training and development to handle difficult conversations and resolve conflict.

Suggested Talking Points

  • What did the IT manager do differently to bring this conversation to a calmer place?
  • Was a shared goal established? What was it?
  • Note the use of contrasting statements – “I don’t want….I do want…”
  • The woman is very emotional to start with – is it easy and quick for her to become calmer?
  • Note that the IT manager tells his story, and then encourages her to tell hers. What happens during this part of the conversation?
  • Is there a commitment to action?

2 min 18 sec