John Borrowman, CPC
Borrowman Baker LLC
Why is it that some people are so good at communicating through a stressful situation? And the rest of us seem to be stricken with foot-in-mouth disease?
If you recognize that you have room for improvement (lots of improvement, maybe) the authors of “Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High” would probably say you’re off to a good start. There are four of them, surprisingly: Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler; and they manage to weave their contributions into an easily read how-to manual for navigating your conversations away from the shoals.
Crucial conversations happen everywhere. Given the amount of time you spend at work, you’re bound to have plenty of them there. BV professionals aren’t immune from the stresses brought on by economic uncertainty. No matter where you are in the hierarchy, you will encounter the crucial conversation. Simply put, it’s a discussion where the stakes are high, opinions vary and emotions run strong – sometimes really strong. Sounds like the one you had yesterday, right?
Mastering the crucial conversation is key to advancing your career. Whether it involves asking for a raise and promotion from the boss, managing younger staff so that they grow in their own careers, or establishing better relationships with peers at any level, this book can help you harness the power of dialogue.
Beginning with a self-test, the authors build from fundamentals about how to spot the crucial conversation literally as it develops, to practical models and skills which become tools for transforming crucial conversations from frightening events into interactions that yield success and results.
“Crucial Conversations” is a book that you will want to keep handy. Its value lies in applying what you’ve learned, going back to the book to learn more, and applying that. As Stephen Covey says in his Foreword: “To know and not to do is really not to know.”
“Crucial Conversations” is published by McGraw-Hill, and should be available through most booksellers.