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Five Ways To Destroy An Important Discussion

Aug 18, 2007
Of course you want to have a positive outcome to an important discussion!

But sometimes it just doesn't happen and you're not sure why.

Let's look at five possible ways you may have been jeopardizing the success of a conversation. Each of these can have a huge impact on how the communication will develop.

CANCEL THE APPOINTMENT AT THE LAST MINUTE

What better way is there to show that you don't value the meeting you've scheduled?
Setting a time and keeping to it AND being right on time shows the importance you have placed on the discussion.

TALK MORE THAN YOU LISTEN

You may feel as though you have so much wisdom that you just have to share it all! The fact is that your listening will make all the difference in knowing how the situation could be improved. By your intent listening you are able to hear the nuances that may not have been so obvious and you'll know what needs to be said to be resolve a conflict or have a positive influence.

AVOID TALKING ABOUT ANY FEELINGS

Sure it may be a business meeting, but we are all human beings and the feelings that are present can make a huge difference in how productive a company can be. When there are concerns that are not being addressed, there can be an energy drain and less work can be accomplished. So take the time to inquire about feelings and listen carefully to what is being said and avoid reacting defensively to what you hear.

ANSWER EVERY CALL THAT COMES IN DURING YOUR MEETING

Ouch! Having a conversation interrupted by phones ringing AND your answering the calls is so disrespectful of the other person in the discussion. The interruption can also break the flow of thoughts and good ideas can be lost. Turn your cell phone off and forward your phone or turn off the ringer if possible. If there are any calls the do come in, ignore them and let them go to voice mail.

DON'T WORRY IF YOU RUN OUT OF TIME

Yes, you do need to be concerned if you run out of time and don't come to closure. Running out of time during a discussion and not determining the next most important step means that the time and energy expended to have the meeting may have been wasted. It is really important to allow time for winding down from the discussion. With both people working together to determine the next steps, it creates a strong forward moving direction. Set intentions for what both of you would like to see happen and what needs to be handled first.

If these five fatal flaws can be avoided, you will be guaranteed to have more satisfying and productive discussions. This can result in a better relationship, increased productivity, and employee retention.

If you'd like to have more positive outcomes from your important discussions, perhaps you could benefit from working with a business coach.
About the Author
Visit exuberantproductivity.com to find out more about coaching and access resources and research that may be helpful in resolving the sticky situations in your life. Suzanne Holman, MAEd is your Exuberant Productivity Coach and can be reached at suzanne@suzanneholman.com.
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