Nadine Powrie Consultancy | Executive & Leadership Coaching

LinkedIn Live Recovering from difficult conversations

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LinkedIn Live Recovering from difficult conversations

Thu, 8/18 [11:14]PM • [49:53]

SUMMARY KEYWORDS

conversation, recovery, people, person, important, difficult, situation, agenda, conflict, negotiation, nadine, thought, questions, point, recover, absolutely, easier, negotiate, puzzle, reflect

SPEAKERS

Nadine Powrie

 

Nadine Powrie  [00:02]

So a very good evening. From my, from Dubai. I’m Nadine Powrie. I’m an executive and leadership coach, and I’m a workplace mediator. And I’m absolutely delighted to welcome Louisa Weinstein on my LinkedIn life today. It’s good afternoon to you, Louisa.

 

[00:18]

Good afternoon. Good evening to you in a Dean.

 

Nadine Powrie  [00:22]

Thanks very much. Thank you very much for coming on my LinkedIn life, would you like to share with the whole world what you do?

 

[00:32]

Well, my focus is on really finally making difficult conversations easier. So after years, begrudgingly working in corporate law, because I thought that, that successful people stick to very hard things. I found myself in a community mediation class in an attempt to solve my managerial shortcomings. And I immediately fell in love with the mediation methodology because it provided building blocks to enable influence and create innovative constructive conversations, ones that I previously as a manager wasn’t even allowing myself to have. So I bring these skills really, and tools to my clients for more creative and easier conversations.

 

Nadine Powrie  [01:21]

Okay, so we should tell the world that actually we’ve never met, we connect. We’ve got we connected on LinkedIn A while back, because I was looking to I was trying to identify guests for the LinkedIn life. And I got in touch with you. And I said, Louisa, would you like to come on my LinkedIn live? And you said, Well, shall we have a chat first? And we did have a chat? And then we thought, yes, okay, let’s do it.

 

[01:49]

Yeah, because we have a lot in common, don’t win it in with your passions and our focus,

 

Nadine Powrie  [01:55]

we do and difficult conversation is actually something that we have in common. And you said to me, what about doing something that is slightly different? And that is looking at the after, to difficult conversations? So recovering from difficult conversation? And actually, I thought that you were very right to suggest that because there’s a lot out there on managing difficult conversations. But there isn’t much about recovering from difficult conversation. So I guess the first question I want to ask you is, is what made you suggest that?

 

[02:32]

Well, it’s interesting. I’m just, I’m thinking about two things, because I just had a conversation with a client today, I was just telling you, just now, I was having a conversation with a client today and, or a potential client, actually, she’s mediated already with someone and it had gone okay, and there had been an agreement. But things change. And, and sometimes we have to have another set of conversations or even another mediation, because I think once you’ve broken down the problem, you know, things are a little bit more raw, you’re more vulnerable. And you need to start to have the conversation in a different way. And that’s not just one conversation, that’s actually a change of how we have the conversation and even of culture. So coming up to a big conversation, having it having it successfully is one thing, and it’s very good. And you might reach a deal or an agreement. But for that to be sustainable. You need to accept what’s happened, recover from what’s happened, and forge a way forward, which is possibly a little bit more vulnerable, but definitely more resilient. Eventually, that vulnerability creates resilience and a capacity to have much more resilient, powerful conversations going forward. I mean, you want to take advantage of that difficult conversation. I know I’ve put loads in there.

 

Nadine Powrie  [04:07]

You have put loads in there. And before we came live, actually, I was saying to you that the recovery is not only for the person who is having is leading that difficult conversation, but it’s actually for both parties, doesn’t it? And it’s a it’s a different recovery, isn’t it?

 

[04:30]

It? Definitely, yeah. And it’s not just not even just for those two parties. It’s for everyone that that conversation has affected because even if you’re having a conversation between two people, all those people that those people have spoken to all those people that have been impacted by the pre and post of the conversation and your different people’s experience of the conversation, particularly if something’s changed, or if they’ve done something different in the car. conversation, you know, they can often have some, something similar to buyers regret, you need to, you know, be really sure about what’s going to happen, then you need to anticipate the kind of stepping back from what we’ve agreed in that difficult conversation, even if it was successful.

 

Nadine Powrie  [05:17]

So So what would be your first, your first advice regarding that recovery? Where shall we start with that?

 

[05:27]

Well, I think first of all, is knowing is being clear what is going to need to be reviewed? So, you know, what are the things that we’ve agreed on? And what do we need to be reviewed, but also, I think it’s an agreement about how we’re going to have the conversation going forward. How, so I don’t know whether I told you about the five point agenda that I think it’s really powerful for embedded embedding the change of difficult conversations and kind of creating continual change in the conversation. So I told

 

Nadine Powrie  [06:03]

you about that you can share it with yours, share it with us.

 

[06:07]

So the five point agenda was developed by someone called Virginia Satir. And it’s very, very powerful in business, actually, and in personal exchanges. But in business, it’s really, really powerful because it allows vulnerability, but with boundaries. And, you know, sometimes we want to have heart to heart conversations in business, but it’s not appropriate. So it’s a balance between opening ourselves up to the other person showing a little bit of ourselves, whilst at the same time being safe. So the five point agenda is really love it. It starts with appreciation, everybody has the agenda. So everyone’s responsible, it’s not the manager, or the CEO that’s responsible. It’s whoever you are in a meeting where that you have responsibility for the agenda. So, you know, you don’t look to your senior for what’s next on the agenda, you might say, Oh, I think this is next on the agenda. So it creates an equality in the conversation of mutual participation. So we start with appreciations. Because it’s always really great to hear how we’re appreciated, but also, what it is that the other person appreciates what’s important to them. Plus, if we’re annoyed with someone seeking, the thing that we appreciate about them, is good for us. Like, oh, it is, you know, the fact that they turn up on time, actually, that is that is quite a big deal. It’s not something that I take for granted, even if, you know, I think, oh, they should do it anyway, I can appreciate that. And it warms me to the other person than them to me sooner. And I think, start to think of them as a real person as opposed to a kind of adversary. The next one is puzzles. And that’s nice if we continue the agenda. Because the puzzles are a problems, but their problems that we solve together, that might not completely complete at the end of the conversation that we can carry on to the next conversation. How did you get on with that puzzle? That puzzle is completely finished. Now, I’m on to a new one, or, yeah, there’s a piece of that puzzle that I still can’t work out and it opens the door for a bit more collaborative conversation. I’m really, really, really important in this agenda is that each person really listens to each other, while they talk about their point of the agenda. They reflect back, they they understand the ground what they’ve heard, okay, so appreciation is puzzles, new information, there’s so much we take for granted when we’re in a business relationship with someone but things move so quickly, we forget that little bit of information that didn’t seem that important. But actually, if I tell you about it, or remind you of it, it’s really helpful. And it really connects us. Oh, yeah, that’s a focus. That’s new information. Next one, number four complaints and recommendations, have it on the agenda because we’ve always got complaints. We’ve always got recommendations. So we have it on the agenda. We’re like, okay, we’re at this point, we’re sharing our complaints and recommendations in the context of everything else. It’s easier to swallow. And it’s in context. You know, we appreciate we have puzzles, we have new information, and we have some complaints and recommendations. And finally wishes, hopes and dreams to leave the conversation on a bit of a an up, but also to look at where we’re going forward. And wishes hopes and dreams can be you know, I I wish that you know, oil prices remained down or you know, can be something that I completely out of control of or it can be, I wish that I could have more confidence to really say what I need to say to you or it could be oh, I want to buy a new house. So just it opens us up both professionally and personally to the other person but in a way that’s safe and you useful and constructive. So we’re moving through stuff. So that’s a five point agenda.

 

Nadine Powrie  [10:06]

So that in effect is a is a system, that if we use that system, you believe very strongly that it will be easier to recover from a difficult conversation. Yes,

 

[10:19]

because what it allows you to do is kind of revisit small pieces of that conversation, particularly if there are small resentments or niggles around that conversation that we need to revisit and repair. we contextualize them. And we talk about them in a way that that that’s easier.

 

Nadine Powrie  [10:41]

Okay, so I want to ask you a question. Because, for me, I’m trying to be the devil’s advocate here. Okay. So for for me, we’re, every time I examine a system, I first of all, think about myself. And I always think about, okay, so how am I actually, before I go out, using any systems that are out there, or any strategies or any tips or guidance, I look at myself, and I’m thinking, okay, so how am I so it’s the self awareness, then I know how I get into how I transition to go into a system, because I know my mindset, I know how strong I am. straightaway, you talk about resentment, right? If we are resentful, then we are going into a conversation in a deficient mood to some extent. So for me, what’s important is, first of all, the kind of diagnostic assessment of the self, and then assess when I’m going to make that move to use any framework, any system, that’s going to help me because if I’m not in the right mindset, then there is no point.

 

[11:54]

Yeah, I agree. I agree. And I’d like so I when I think it’s different to preparing for a difficult conversation, so the five point agenda, I would use much more on an ongoing basis, as just to check in to know that those things are going to be continually revisited. But I think when I’m, I think that’s different to having a negotiation. So when I’m having a negotiation, I agree, I need to have my, I need to have prepared myself fully, partially because I need to be able to have the room to hear someone else. And I can’t really hear them if I’ve got all sorts of noise going on in my head. So that preparation, I would do that, that I do differently. So I have a have another format for that. Because I’m afraid, Nadine, my background was in law. And I need to I need to know, I’m not you know, I’m not a full blown lawyer at all in any way. But the thing that I need or like is a structure I can move in and out of and that I know where I am in the context of a structure.

 

Nadine Powrie  [13:14]

Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I guess I was saying that. Because to go into appreciation of puzzle, you talk about new information, I think I need to be in the right mindset, to to, you know, post post difficult conversation, I need to know that I can go in there and actually be able to control myself, be able to engage in a conversation be able to be interested, you know, and not be resentful and be stuck to the past. Yeah. And I think that, knowing who you are, yeah. And if you’re able to do that, for me, that’s the starting point. Yeah. Of the recovery.

 

[13:59]

Yeah, I think that’s, that’s a really, really good point. And yeah, I mean, I suggest to people, whenever they come out of a difficult conversation, the first thing they do is ask themselves a series of questions or pick a few. So it can be, you know, what did I contribute to make the difficult conversation happen? What did I, what can I see? That was funny in myself, that I did, because we can come out and feel quite a lot of shame. And it’s quite, I think it’s quite important to look back at our actions and go, Oh, you know, that really was my alter ego coming out. And so really, yes, I think really part of the recovery is looking at, you know, what, what happened? How did I contribute? What was my where were my fears, my false evidence appearing real? Where was my pride and my shame? And my fear in that? And yeah, how did I contribute? And what would I have liked to have done differently? But I do think that it’s important to do that carefully, and often with the support of someone else who can, who can really, really listen. So you don’t want someone saying, No, don’t worry, you were fine. It’s okay. You want someone to go? Okay. So you felt that actually, that part of your behavior, or your action really didn’t help the situation? I think that process and all those questions, I’ve got a whole long list that and Ken cloak has a brilliant list of those questions. In one of his books, can’t remember offhand. But asking ourselves those questions, but also, I think processing the answers with someone else. Because I think reality checking is very important. Post those situations, we can be too hard on ourselves, we can to be too hard on the other person. And being really clear on what’s the reality here is very important in the recovery, I think. But I think that that should also happen. In a mediation, I think the part of the mediation or part of conflict coaching is often working through a reality checking and working through an acceptance of what the other person has done, and also what we’ve done. And, yes, just also what are, you know, we have resurfacing character traits that trick us trip us up on one of the one of the benefits of a difficult conversations or a conflict is that they really present those character trades, you know, in our faces. And so we can really take that and go, that’s what I do. And I’ve done it before, and I’m not sure I want to do it again. And just that realisation enables us to not do it again, which is, you know, the joy of conflict. You know, that’s the one massive benefit is that we can really learn it’s uncomfortable, but we can really learn. Sorry, I don’t

 

Nadine Powrie  [17:23]

know you, you made a good point, actually about speaking with somebody. To get the reality check. I had a guest, I think it was two weeks ago to the west. And we talked a lot about journaling, and writing, okay, which is, which is great. And actually, I’m doing an experiment at the moment where I am journaling a lot more than what I was to see if it is helping me be a better leader, for example, a better executive coach, a better workplace mediator. So I am doing that experiment at the moment, we will see about the finding, but we weren’t having a talk because we saw not everybody is ready to speak with somebody else about the process of the recovery, because you are showing vulnerability. And you’ve got to be quite courageous to say, Well, I am I feel resentful, I am angry, you know, to to actually admit those things, you have to be quite courageous. And I think that sometimes for some people, it’s easier to write those things down. For other people, it’s easier to talk them through with somebody. Because the danger is that when you’re on your own, unless you know yourself very well, you’re going to continue to make assumptions. Or your inner critic, he’s going to take you down the road, where actually you’re on the wrong path and you’re not recovering, you’re just feeding into that pain, post difficult conversation. So I like your idea of I mean, for me, it’s kind of both having both like, you know, having time with yourself and that talk with yourself, but also having it with somebody else.

 

[19:17]

But I think that’s where peer conflict coaching is really powerful and underused in organizations. You know, for me to be able to say, Nadine, I would like to have a peer conflict coaching conversation with you about this situation that I come up with. And for that trigger to be for you to say to me for you to know and I say that to you that you don’t want me to feed you don’t want to feed back. I don’t sorry, I don’t want you to feed back. I just want you to act as a mirror to reflect back my thoughts and help me digest them in a better way in an easier way. So because actually, if I’m really angry, I probably won’t say too Use straightaway, I’m really angry, I’ll probably say they’ve really irritated me, or why do they keep doing that? Or, you know, I’ll lay on my anger. And if you say to me, on the basis of some of the things that I’ve said, sounds like, you’re really angry about that Louisa, then I can say, Yeah, I am, or I’m not angry, I’m frustrated, you know, I don’t want to feel, if I don’t want to take that step to anger. So, you know, and I can take them responsibility for my feeling. And I think that takes a while to be able to take responsibility, because as soon as I say, Well, I’m really frustrated with them. As soon as I’ve got clear that I’m frustrated with them, it doesn’t take up as much as it did of me. Whereas if I’m saying, you know, they did this, and they did that, and they keep on doing and they’ve done it again, you know, to just for me to just own I am frustrated when they do that. It’s easier for me, but it sometimes needs to be broken down for me. And I think you’re right, the writing the journaling, but also the, the proper peer conflict coaching, the conversations where people aren’t assuming that helping the other person is telling them what to do.

 

Nadine Powrie  [21:21]

And also, the space to find the right space, the right environment, to be either on your own, or in the company of conflict coach, for example, as you say, but the environment post, a difficult conversation is really important. The colors, you know, there’s been lots of research done, isn’t it on the colors, and the scent in the room and all of those things, which actually makes a huge difference.

 

[21:53]

Yeah, that’s such an such an important point, the space that you create, following the conversation, how you how you do that, because, you know, the often what people have to do particularly, well, actually post when people are working from home now a lot, but you know, you come home from work, or you stop your work, and then you go straight, some people go straight into a family situation. And the with no time to process, the difficult conversation that’s happened in work, and then, you know, it’s very hard, then you take it into the family situation that kind of blows out. So that transition, particularly now, is really important to think about because otherwise you’re just, it’s just misfiring all over the place, even just to go and come home and wash your hands, wash the work day off and come into the new, you know, know, when am I going to be looking at this, but there’s definitely got to be a rot wine downtime, from the difficult conversation for the person to process it.

 

Nadine Powrie  [23:00]

Yeah, and it doesn’t have to be a closed a closed space. It can be that you decide to walk into nature, or listening to your music or you know, meditating or, but it doesn’t have to be a confined space. And it could be an activity as well, actually, you know, you’ve just said wash your hand, it could be baking or whatever. But it’s something that is taking your mind away, where you can replenish, you can, you know, your brain is going to sort itself out for a while, you’re not going to think about it, to just ground yourself,

 

[23:39]

to bring yourself back to yourself. Like to really make friends with yourself, I think I think is is right. And then to come back to it. I think there’s a very important part of replenishment that that needs to happen. But that’s, you know, that is an ongoing practice as well. Yeah, it’s a discipline. Yeah. Particularly of your because, yeah, the difficult conversation doesn’t end, you know, it’ll probably lead to another difficult conversation. And so making the most of that, but yeah, I was just reflecting on the, the, there’s a balance between running away from the situation and immersing yourself in something entirely different. And staying with yourself and the kind of feelings that are going around in your, in your body, following you know, the adrenaline and all of that. And kind of channeling that before instead of throwing it out. Because that’s what we do in in, in conflict or in difficult conversations a little bit we kind of were throwing it out on to the other person the whole time. And I think afterwards we while during if we can, we need to bring it back to ourselves and and contain it. And that I think is the hardest thing. So equally after the conversation we can, we need to rein it back into us as opposed to be kind of thrown the tennis balls of our conflict around it everybody else?

 

Nadine Powrie  [25:17]

Yeah, I guess it’s about rhythm, isn’t it? The kind of, you stop the pace, you don’t run, you just walk a little bit. And also you, you heal, you have to heal, even if you are full of resentment. And even if you ask thinking about the next conversation, because it’s very easy to then become obsessed about the next conversation, the awkwardness of what are we going to tell each other? What is everybody else going to think when we’re all in the same room when they know that this has happened?

 

[25:56]

I mean, yes, definitely. Definitely. And I think that that’s, you know, that I think it’s very important to get reality checks on that, to speak to people beforehand to get reality checks on that. But it was just, I’ve just lost a, a train.

 

Nadine Powrie  [26:17]

I was talking about healing, I was talking about healing, and the feeling awkward, and I could see that you were thinking.

 

[26:24]

So yeah, what it what it is, I think is that I think one of the so appreciation and empathy, I think the biggest healers, like it’s the quickest way to get ourselves out of a really chunky, difficult situation. And, and I think that when you’ve got someone really, really difficult that you’ve may be, or if feels really difficult to you, that you’ve had this conversation with, I think that sometimes the only way to break the cycle, is to really focus on good things happening to that person to take some really strong time to really think and envisage and even close your eyes and think about all these great things or the things that you want happen to you for that for it to happen for them. And I think that can just flick a switch sometimes. Because it it starts to show us we actually there’s there’s enough for all of us. And it just changes the dynamic that person takes less hold of us. When we can do that. It’s a it’s a really tricky thing to do. But I think the more we can give in those situations where we feel under attack, the the stronger the position we put ourselves in, and the more robust actually we are to negotiate with.

 

Nadine Powrie  [27:56]

Do you think that there are specific situations that are very difficult to recover from?

 

[28:10]

I think that the most difficult situations are the situations where we are most confronted personally. If I’m really in a difficult situation with someone, and they have really raised my hackles, and I can no longer tolerate them, I really have to look at why I’m in the situation and why they are raising my hackles. So hi. So what can I see in them that that I don’t like myself? And where have I not set my boundaries? That’s generally, where have I not been absolutely clear on the limits. And I couldn’t have been clearer on the limits, but I might not have stuck to them. That’s the point at which I think we fall over with someone else. They’ve taken too much of us or they or we feel like they’ve taken too much or they’ve, you know, disrespected us. If I’ve been disrespected or they’ve taken too much. There’s somewhere along the line where I’ve consistently not allowed my boundaries to be pushed and not kind of honored, where I am myself because I can always walk away, you know, and the thing is, what does walking away mean? Well, it might mean some really difficult decisions. But generally if I want if I need to make those difficult decisions, and I haven’t thought them through, it makes my interaction with the other person. So a lot harder. So I need to think, okay, so if this all goes wrong, and they’re completely, you know, they behaved badly. I need to think well do I want to be in it? working relationship with them? And what does that mean? If I don’t? And then what are my choices, so that I end up positively choosing to engage with that person or not. And if I’m positively choosing to engage with them, it’s because the other alternatives are not as good as engaging with that person. But that can be, that can mean some really hard choices really hard.

 

Nadine Powrie  [30:25]

Because I think you’re making a really good point here, because sometimes walking away is actually the beginning of the recovery process. Yeah, and, and it might be interpreted by other people, as, you know, your treater, or you’re not resilient enough. It’s not good that you are walking away, it shows you’re weak, you know, but actually, you’re absolutely right, we will have a breaking point. And we all have boundaries and values as well. And sometimes walking away, is actually very courageous, and is the beginning of the recovery, the end of the suffering. I see it like that, actually, as you are talking.

 

[31:10]

But also, I think it shifts the dynamic, because it’s not, if I walk away, and I really am committed to walking away, it might not actually be forever, it might just not be that they’ve seen it, and I had to walk away for them to really see it.

 

Nadine Powrie  [31:24]

Yeah, and that’s, that’s a good point. It’s all about choice, isn’t it?

 

[31:29]

It’s really is about choice. And those choices are hard. You know, it’s easy to say, well, it’s you know, you just have to make a choice. Do you want to stay? Or do you want to go? Do you want to put up with this behavior? Or do you not? And there are shades of gray? But yeah, I need to look at what what are my choices in this? And what am I choosing to do? Myself as well about about myself in this situation?

 

Nadine Powrie  [31:54]

So do you think that the process of recovery is about? What is the first questions that we need to ask ourselves, when we’ve done that conversation? Is it? What choice do I have now?

 

[32:10]

Well, I think that the first question is always my first favorite question, which is, what do you want? You know, what do I want? Now, particularly after you’ve had that conversation, you might have wanted something different before you insert into that conversation, you come out of the conversation, things have changed. Now what what do I want? What does that look like? Specifically? What might the milestones be? What? What might? What would it how will it be when I get there? And actually, how committed Am I to what I want? That that’s always I think, the next set of questions, where am I going? And how am I really as attached to that, as I thought I was

 

Nadine Powrie  [32:52]

just saying the questions are always about ourselves, because I’m asking you that because for a lot of people, the judgment that other people are making is really important. So you want to recover from a conversation from a difficult conversation yet, you’ve got a lot of people watching you thinking, Oh, how are they going to respond to that? Now? It’s been settled? So will there be some resentments somewhere? How are they going to negotiate working again, being, you know, in the same team online, or in the same open plan? Do you?

 

[33:33]

Yeah, I think the work that we do on ourselves, you know, around, you know, unstructured work that we do, looking inward, allows us to listen better to what’s going on outside. So I can’t really listen to other people or see them clearly, if I’ve got the various shades of me going on, that I haven’t quite dealt with beforehand. So when I’m looking at that other person, and I’m working out how I’m going to deal with them, what I’m going to how I’m going to move forward with them. I need to be able to fully listen to where they are when I say listen, look at their actions, look at their past actions, look at what they’ve told me already. And clarify that and work with that and be fully with them. So that I can then make my choices in my nugget, you know, move on to the next negotiation. Was that was that kind of?

 

Nadine Powrie  [34:38]

No, no. I mean, I’m just curious. So that’s all I’m asking. And you know, the process of recovery. It’s not a straight line, is it?

 

[34:48]

I think the thing that can happen is that when we get pushed off track, we can completely react because it’s such a relief when things get resolved. And when we get a you know when we get a resolution when we know negotiate something and things turn out well, and we think, yeah, this is it, this is everything I hoped for. And then something happens where we see someone acting in a way that they did before or, you know, something going off in a direction that we weren’t planning. And we, we can panic. Even past boss can panic that, oh, it’s all going wrong and oh, I made a mistake, I should never have trusted that this was going in the right direction. Whereas actually, it just needs a reset. I mean, that flexibility is so important, which is why we need such a depth of conversation in what can seem to be a very perfunctory business negotiation. You know, because our reactions are so complex. And I think particularly following COVID people’s reactions are can be more intense, because people have gone through quite a lot. And sometimes our reactions can be stronger after, you know, what, for some people have been, has been, you know, traumatic situations in many people’s lives, you know, can suddenly just creep up, I’m not saying that overwhelmed by them, but they can, you know, the feelings can take people by surprise, or, you know, setbacks can take people by, by more surprised than they would have done, formally. So, yeah, that that work, I think, is really important.

 

Nadine Powrie  [36:32]

Because sometimes that we hoped, it’s your phone, you’re in demand tonight with

 

[36:41]

either, I’ll leave,

 

Nadine Powrie  [36:43]

it’s fine. I was gonna say that. Sometime, we’re on the road to recovery. So we’re quite disciplined, because it does require you to be discipline and knowing where you want to go. So making the right choice for yourself, which ultimately will have an impact on, you know, positively on other people and on the organization. But sometimes there are triggers that move you backwards, right. And it’s about understanding, it’s kind of anticipating as well, without not becoming obsessed. But it’s understanding the potential triggers and navigating them. Yeah, overcoming them.

 

[37:27]

Yeah. And I think they’re, we need to be really clear on we need to, we need to come back to often the negotiating position, kind of where we want to go, I’m really looking at where the other person is coming from or once. Look, it requires a pause, which can be really difficult to just look at the other person because it generally the the issue will come from someone else and look at them. When that curveball comes in and goes and ask ourselves, what is this? Where is this coming from? What are they trying to achieve? What’s happened, just really pulling ourselves right out of the situation? And, and being curious about it, as well as being curious about our reaction to it. You know, oh, I really, really felt strongly about that. Why, why? Why did I feel so strongly? Well, because they were acting in a way that made me not trust them. They’ve acted like this before, and I need to think about whether I can trust them really good information. So what is it going to take to trust them? And then, but also understanding what you know, from them this look, you know, to reflect about this was a real curveball, and when you throw the curveball, I made me like, feel like it was difficult to trust you. And I wondered why you put it in? I mean, I think the Brit that. Talking about recovery, I don’t know whether you’ve watched succession.

 

Nadine Powrie  [39:11]

Oh, I love it. Love it? Yes. Yeah. Because they

 

[39:15]

recover and recover and have and that brutal, brutal, as brutal can be but they run with it. They they’re in reality. And and I think all the things that we do, are all the you know, self reflection, the listening to the other people. The structuring of the negotiation is all about staying ahead by being really clear on what is the reality as opposed to my hopes and dreams and an almost fantasy of what I want the situation to be.

 

Nadine Powrie  [39:48]

Yeah, I think you’re, you’re absolutely right. Because it’s very easy to go into an imaginary world that actually record Every much longer because you’re completely misaligned with reality.

 

[40:05]

And, you know, it’s hard because we’ve got our goals, we’ve got our aspirations, we’ve got the things that we’re going for, I mean, often, you have to be unrealistic with your ambition to achieve your goals, but in a, when negotiating with another person, you’ve got to stay poor, we’ve got to pull ourselves back into the reality of what is whilst, you know, hoping that something else might be possible. But you know, being in those two places, is really important.

 

Nadine Powrie  [40:40]

I remember when I was a head teacher, I remember my first headship at the beginning of my first headship, actually, quite difficult. And I remember everyday feeling, you know, the, everything seems to go against me, and I had a coach at that point. And, you know, no matter how qualified you are, it’s not on page 75, you know, that kind of scenario, you you have to work things out. And I remember my coach saying to me, what pair of glasses? Are you choosing to where? And I say that, that’s so great, actually. Because sometime, we can also be stuck. And we’re not moving forward. Because, because we can’t move forward, because we feel like we’re just stuck, like, you know, we, we, we do not, we are not obsessed with the situation, but we just don’t know what to do. It feels like it won’t, it’s one thing after another, and therefore, the recovery isn’t even going. It’s like, you’re in the pain. And she asked me that question. And I and that has always stuck with me actually. Because by using the Okay, what type of glasses are you wearing? I think it’s it’s made me reflect and put the right dimension of things in the right way. Like, you know, I make it so big, when in fact, it’s so small, because of my emotion, because, you know, we all have pride. If you’re a high achiever, you want to be able to well, you know, do very well. And sometime time when you don’t have the solution, and when you can’t find it straight away. That pain is still ongoing, and yet, it’s nothing, it’s just the recovery would be a very small thing to do. And yet for you, because you’re in it, you think it’s like killing, you know, climbing Kilimanjaro every day. It was a nice, way

 

[42:51]

is lovely. It is lovely. And it’s absolutely that is you know, it’s the washing their hands, it’s the taking the glasses off it. So, okay, how can I interrupt this? I mean, not taking the glass off physically, but in our mind, how can I interrupt this thought and redirect it? Yeah, that’s why frameworks are really a really helpful, so. But also, it really helps if everyone is working to a similar framework, even if you’re doing it differently. You know, if the if if people within the organization, you know, we come from a culture, I think that’s changed a lot. But that was very adversarial, very much about who’s right and who’s wrong, and convincing the other person that we’re right. And I think more and more that translates less and less in business, that the collaborative model is, is a much more common one, we do much more online, and therefore the conversation needs to be very, very different and changing the way that we have that conversation is a process. You know, it’s almost about you know, most people are having conflict coaching skills, it’s about people knowing really how to negotiate but also that they’re in a negotiation. Unless about proving my how right I am. And I think that’s a big transition for people to make.

 

Nadine Powrie  [44:27]

Yes. And you mentioned earlier on culture. And it’s so it’s so important that the culture in which you are doing the recovery.

 

[44:39]

Absolutely. Absolutely. Because I was talking to someone recently and it was very clear that the that for them, the only important thing was that the other person changed their mind to come around to their perspective. And, and that was it. And I think that’s a culture that’s, that can be very difficult to really create innovation in.

 

Nadine Powrie  [45:13]

Yeah. But sometimes, you know, we look at our history, historical recovery, you know, according to what’s happened in our life. And it’s quite interesting actually to, to analyze the recovery in different culture, and how you recovered in different culture. I just see that as a PhD to be fascinating.

 

[45:42]

I think that’s why, you know, and so how do you translate? It’s very interesting, my, I started off as a linguist, and I think that conflict resolution is all about is a is all about language. And I think that you can cross cultures, because you listen to I work with people, and I know that you do from from all over the all over the world. And we do talk differently, we have different values, we have things that are different things that are important to us. And so listening to each other, and working through our negotiation, and really being able to do that is the only thing that really allows that collaboration to happen. But the capacity to listen, I think also as a cultural, yes, the cultural challenge.

 

Nadine Powrie  [46:28]

Yes. But the value of respect is universal, isn’t it?

 

[46:35]

I think so. And the capacity for empathy is also universal. Yeah, it’s just the transition of that into business, while keeping ourselves strong and powerful. And I think that what is strong and powerful now is different to what it used to be. It’s someone that can, you know, manage to contain themselves that can ask for help that can hold a situation and themselves in a situation which, you know, can be really difficult for all of us as well, you know, to have influence without exerting full, overwhelming power. It’s a set of skills.

 

Nadine Powrie  [47:18]

Yes. And what you call an overwhelming power, I call it I call it persuasion, you know, the difference between influencing and persuading. We saw we’ve been speaking for nearly 48 minutes. Is there anything else around this, you know, focus of recovering after a difficult conversation that you’d like to add or finish on?

 

[47:53]

I think I think what I would finish on is that it’s ongoing work and ongoing exploration, that there’s not an end to it, and that the more we do recover from those difficult conversations, the more opportunity we have for innovation, creativity and collaboration. There’s so much more, Nadine. But we’d be going on?

 

Nadine Powrie  [48:16]

We would. So with that. First of all, thank you very much for coming to on my LinkedIn knife. But if I know that you have a program that you’re starting next week, so would you would you like to talk about it so that the whole world knows about the program and comes on and come and work with you?

 

[48:34]

I’d love to do to do that. So the program is about finally making difficult conversations easy. It’s as simple as that. It’s for executives, leaders and HR who want to lead and with confidence, clarity and compassion to get what you want with clarity, confidence, clarity, and compassion. It’s absolutely jam packed with frameworks and formulas and strategies, but also one to one sessions, because I think the key is, is transformation. So it runs over six weeks, and I’m going to post the link to book a call. I’m really interested to work with people who, you know, won’t want to make a change and even if you don’t want to complete the full program, I’d love to chat anyway.

 

Nadine Powrie  [49:21]

Okay, so there’s no excuse now, if people want to come to your program, then they can find the link to his. It’s been an absolute pleasure to speak with you and with us. Thank you so much for the view. And well, wishing you good end of afternoon in London,

 

[49:40]

easeful and you’re in Dubai. Have a good evening.

 

Nadine Powrie  [49:45]

Thank you very much. Okay, bye bye. Bye.

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