Getting a side-tracker back on track

Fed up with digressions, diversions and delays? These tactics will help you keep your conversations on-topic.

Have a clear purpose

Sometimes conversations get side-tracked because people don’t know why they’re talking in the first place. Prepare for the conversation beforehand. What must be covered? What outcomes do you want? Note down the crucial points. Tell the other person your purpose early on.

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Setting limits with over-talkers

Your time is precious. Here’s how to reclaim it from the timewasters.

Does someone you work with bore you to tears with twenty minute monologues? Frequently interrupt you by stopping by your desk for a quick chat that goes on forever? Being sociable at work is great. But if you resent your time being taken up by over-talkers, these tips might come in handy.

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Establishing team norms

Pete’s the project lead for a new cross-organisation team. He hasn’t worked with the team members before. Time is of the essence for this project and Pete needs to get the team performing.

Here’s how we’d help Pete deal with this problem. You can use the same strategies to develop or reinvigorate your teams.

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Issues focussed language

Good intentions are often scuppered by a poor choice of words.

Focussing on the issue rather than the person is a good start to resolving conflict. Here are some tips for doing this.

More ‘I’, less ‘You’

Sentences which start with ‘you’ often sound like an attack. Reframe sentences into ‘I’ statements to make them less personal and accusing. Say ‘I feel angry when meetings start late’. Avoid saying ‘you are always late’ or ‘I’m angry because you are late’ (a ‘you’ sentence thinly disguised).

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Rebuilding a team after unpopular change

Carla has just been promoted. Now she’s supervising a newly restructured customer service team. But it’s clear not everyone is happy with the changes that have been made. Carla’s new team is in conflict.

Carla needs to get her team back on track quickly. Here’s how we’d help Carla deal with this problem. You can use the same strategies to improve your team’s performance or rebuild your team after a period of significant change.

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Language that boosts team performance

What you say can make or break team dynamics.

Have you ever worked in a team full of complaining or negative people? If you have, you know the impact negative language can have on team relationships. Great teams speak positively. Here are some tips on how to follow this example.

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Detox your team dynamics

Does your team have a bad vibe? You can do something about it.

If your team has low morale or toxic dynamics, the root problem may be relationships and behaviours. Here are three steps you can take to detox team dynamics and get your team back on track.

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How to negotiate a pay rise

Dan’s recently taken on more responsibility at work. He thinks he deserves a pay rise but is nervous about asking his boss.

Here’s how we’d help Dan deal with this problem. You can use the same strategies to present an effective case for a pay rise to your own employer.

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