How do you grow your ability to have effective courageous conversations?
Summary: A step-by-step guide on how to identify the most important conversations you need to have and how to approach them.
Written by Alistair Gordon And Dominic Johnson 30 May 2021

Make a list of all of the conversations you’ve been meaning to have with colleagues but have been avoiding. Which one of those conversations would be the least stressful, but at the same time have the most impact? Pick that one to start with.

After you’ve chosen which conversation to focus on, follow these steps:

  • Explore the reasons why you have been avoiding the conversation. Work on establishing your intent.

  • Think through what the positive outcomes of the conversation might be if it were to go well. Keep these firmly in mind during the conversation.

  • Run the final test: how would I react if it were me?

  • Schedule the conversation and execute it. Display and deploy courage and consideration.

  • Post-conversation, run an audit. What went well and what could have been done better? What did I learn?

  • Choose the next conversation on the list… and repeat the above steps.

Did you find this tip helpful? You can find many more in our book Master Expert: How to use Expertship to achieve peak performance, seniority and influence in a technical role.

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Download Master Expert Chapter 10, "The Art of Saying No"
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Other articles in this series