How do you deal with difficult conversations?

Preparation

  • What’s the matter with you?
  • My point of view and my guess of what the other side is thinking.
  • Comparison of views: Identify differences and similarities and adjust them for the conversation.
  • Try a neutral outside view – How would a moderator see it?
  • What is my interest? What am I talking about?
  • What might be the interest of the other side?
  • Who does the situation help and how?
  • What emotions resonate with me when I think of this thing? (Loud feelings)
  • What’s underneath? What need on my side is not met and what do I need to have it met?

Structured conduct of the interview

  • Warm up, clarification of the procedure
  • Exchange of views
  • Which emotions/needs are hurt?
  • Explanation of mutual interests, needs, (probably also demands…)
  • What does it take to restore a working relationship?
  • Negotiate a solution
  • Completion by “checkpoints”