Learn how to turn these relationship strains into relationship builders with our nine strategies:
1. Schedule a meeting
While emailing is great for sending quick messages and meeting recaps, it’s far easier for misunderstandings to arise. Messages can get lost in overcrowded inboxes, and your tone can be misinterpreted.
That’s why scheduling a video call is the best way to handle tough conversations in our increasingly virtual world. This way you easily see everyone’s expressions and understand their tone.
Plus, with a meeting and agenda set, everyone will be more prepared to talk about the issue at hand.
2. Come prepared
In an ideal world, we’ll always have a meeting scheduled for difficult conversations in the workplace. But what happens when tough conversations arise unexpectedly? This is where being prepared really pays off.
Every client meeting could potentially become a meeting about the relationship. Being prepared to talk about difficult topics in any meeting with the client can help you anticipate their needs and gain a deeper understanding of where the relationship stands.
Before every client meeting prepare a conversation strategy by asking yourself:
What is the meeting really about?
Who is in the conversation and what are their styles?
What are the key priorities and objectives?
What are the potential opportunities and challenges?
What are your insights, recommendations, and next steps?
Above all, ensure that you’re ready to listen, understand, and empathize with your client.