Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Credit Crunch - Managing Difficult Situations

As we all know we are in a recession! Many of the national indicators look pretty bad – GDP , employment levels etc – and every news bulletin seems determined to depress us. Whilst it is critical that we face this new reality it is equally critical that we all use our own abilities to manage and resolve the increasing tensions in the workplace. Two simple and effective approaches are outlined below.
An Overall Approach to Achieving Your Objectives
1. Focus – keep a clear eye on what you want to achieve, what is the outcome? Re-frame any obstacle/hurdle as exactly that – something to be overcome on the way to achieving your objective

2. Clear priorities – take a deep breath and remember why any outcome or goal is important to you. What values will you demonstrate in how you tackle the situation? In Neuro-Linguistic Programming terms you are at choice and can choose how to respond.

3. Identify your resources – this could include personal qualities & skills , friends , previous experience as well as the traditional financial and people resources

4. Take action – whatever you think appropriate. This may simply start by dividing the challenge into “bite sized chunks “and taking steps to address the “easiest “bit.

5. Use stress reduction techniques. The Stress Management Society recommends avoiding alcohol, taking physical activity and using self-hypnosis!

Reducing Stress and Conflict with Colleagues

Listen. Take a breath and get a sound inner dialogue before you reply. At this point the other person will be all of the talking (or shouting).

Empathise and show that you have heard them. The purpose of this stage is to ‘fix’ the person. Say something like “I can hear that you’re angry about …” or “I can see how upset you are about …”.
Explore. Seek information, ask for clarification and / or check understanding. Questions must be assertive, evenly paced and asked with the voice up. Then summarise by saying “So if I understand you correctly, you feel that …”

Problem solve by discussing the options in terms of moving forwards. For example “how do you think we can resolve this?” or “what if we were to …?”

These two techniques will enable you to continue to achieve results , work with your colleagues and hopefully emerge through this period like a phoenix from the ashes !!