HR Forum                  April 2013                 Having                Difficult              ConversationsDec 13 2010
A step by step              Checklist to help you                manage Difficult                Conversations            ...
You know you need to   have a ‘conversation’   ….you want to, but   something is holding   you back……June 7 2010
Maybe you’ve       tried before, but it       didn’t go well and       you’re still feeling           the scars!?!June 7 2...
Could be that              you’re worried              that you’ll just              make mattersJune 7 2010              ...
Or perhaps you’re         just not sure      where to start, or       confident about      what you can and          can’t...
Remember this….                       You are the employer                        You pay the wages              You are e...
June 7 2010
Stage 1 – Do your   preparation                         Stage 2 – 4 Steps                       to a Good Outcome    Stage...
Stage 1 – Do your preparation! Ask yourself some key questions: 1. Why are you having the conversation? 2. What assumption...
Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 1 - Inquiry • Go on a voyage of discovery, be curious, pretend   you know nothing...
Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 2 - Acknowledgement • Show that you have heard and understood • Explain back or s...
Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 3 - Advocacy • When you sense that they’ve expressed all they   want to say (make...
Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 4 – Problem-Solving • Now you’re ready to build solutions • Ask them what they th...
Stage 3 – Practice, practice, practice! • A successful outcome will depend on 2 things, how you   behave and what you say....
Next time, you’ll              be prepared, so                you won’t be               collecting anyJune 7 2010        ...
Next time, you    will be prepared    so you will make        progress!June 7 2010
Next time, you will       know where to        start and be      confident about     what you can and         can’t say!Ju...
Good luck!                    and               don’t forget to                 practice!June 7 2010
…and finally, a                couple of               interesting                 cases…June 7 2010
Novak v Phones 4 U Ltd   Comments made by employees about another employee   on Facebook can amount to continuing acts of ...
Novak v Phones 4 U Ltd   The case is worth noting for 2 reasons:   1. It serves as a reminder that comments made by employ...
Bancroft v InterserveIs it reasonable for an employer to dismiss an employee ifasked to do so by a client or customer?Banc...
Bancroft v InterserveAs a result, Bancroft was suspended again, but no efforts were made by Interserve topersuade the Home...
June 7 2010
Change Partner               Consultancy                Providing tailored                  HR, Payroll &                 ...
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Dorset HR Forum April - Having Difficult Conversations

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Dorset HR Forum April - Having Difficult Conversations

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Dorset HR Forum April - Having Difficult Conversations

  1. 1. HR Forum April 2013 Having Difficult ConversationsDec 13 2010
  2. 2. A step by step Checklist to help you manage Difficult Conversations A few interesting casesJune 7 2010
  3. 3. You know you need to have a ‘conversation’ ….you want to, but something is holding you back……June 7 2010
  4. 4. Maybe you’ve tried before, but it didn’t go well and you’re still feeling the scars!?!June 7 2010
  5. 5. Could be that you’re worried that you’ll just make mattersJune 7 2010 worse?!
  6. 6. Or perhaps you’re just not sure where to start, or confident about what you can and can’t say??June 7 2010
  7. 7. Remember this…. You are the employer You pay the wages You are entitled to speak to an employee about any concerns you have with their performance, conduct or behaviour. PROVIDING You are fair and reasonable in how you do it.June 7 2010
  8. 8. June 7 2010
  9. 9. Stage 1 – Do your preparation Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Stage 3 – Practice, Practice, practiceJune 7 2010
  10. 10. Stage 1 – Do your preparation! Ask yourself some key questions: 1. Why are you having the conversation? 2. What assumptions have you or are you making about the persons intentions? 3. What ‘buttons’ of yours are being pushed? 4. How is your attitude toward the conversation influencing your perception of it? 5. Who is the opponent? 6. What are your needs and fears? 7. Have you contributed towards the problem, if so how?June 7 2010
  11. 11. Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 1 - Inquiry • Go on a voyage of discovery, be curious, pretend you know nothing and try and learn as much as possible about the person and their point of view. • Watch their body language, what are they ‘really’ saying? • Let them talk until they’re finished and DON’T INTERRUPT! • Don’t take things personally • Wait your turn to speak.June 7 2010
  12. 12. Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 2 - Acknowledgement • Show that you have heard and understood • Explain back or summarise what you think they’re really going for. • Recognise and respect their position. • Acknowledge whatever you can including your own defensiveness if it comes up. • Acknowledgement is not agreement – don’t confuse the two!June 7 2010
  13. 13. Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 3 - Advocacy • When you sense that they’ve expressed all they want to say (make sure you check..), its your turn to speak. • What can you see from your perspective that they’ve missed? • Help by clarifying your position without minimising theirs.June 7 2010
  14. 14. Stage 2 – 4 Steps to a Good Outcome Step 4 – Problem-Solving • Now you’re ready to build solutions • Ask them what they think might work, find something you like together and build on it. • If the conversation becomes adversarial, switch back to Step 1 – Inquiry. • Ask for their point of view – this creates safety and encourages them to engage. • Don’t sit on a principle, adjust your attitude to achieve a positive outcome.June 7 2010
  15. 15. Stage 3 – Practice, practice, practice! • A successful outcome will depend on 2 things, how you behave and what you say. • Acknowledge both your own & their emotional energy and feelings and direct it towards a useful purpose. • Remember the objective of why you set out to have the conversation in the first place & return to it at difficult moments. • Don’t take verbal attacks personally or react. • Don’t assume they can or will see things from your view – sometimes you simply need to agree to differ and accept that’s OK. • Practice the conversation before you go ‘live’June 7 2010
  16. 16. Next time, you’ll be prepared, so you won’t be collecting anyJune 7 2010 more scars!
  17. 17. Next time, you will be prepared so you will make progress!June 7 2010
  18. 18. Next time, you will know where to start and be confident about what you can and can’t say!June 7 2010
  19. 19. Good luck! and don’t forget to practice!June 7 2010
  20. 20. …and finally, a couple of interesting cases…June 7 2010
  21. 21. Novak v Phones 4 U Ltd Comments made by employees about another employee on Facebook can amount to continuing acts of discrimination. Mr Novak had a disability as a result of an accident at work. A number of colleagues made fun of him & made comments on Facebook over a period of 6 months. As a result he brought claims of disability, race discrimination, harassment & victimisation. The EAT decided that the 2 sets of FB comments were linked as one continuous act and that there was clearly a connection in terms of individuals, subject matter and timing. They concluded that he did could have a claim for discrimination.June 7 2010
  22. 22. Novak v Phones 4 U Ltd The case is worth noting for 2 reasons: 1. It serves as a reminder that comments made by employees about other employees on social media sites can form basis of discrimination claims and in these cases, the employer can be held liable for the acts of its employees. 1. If there is a series of postings, they are likely to be considered part of a continuing act and an employee will then be able to bring a claim within 3 months of the last act, which is particularly relevant for social media cases where comments will go backwards and forwards and might be made over a long period of time.June 7 2010
  23. 23. Bancroft v InterserveIs it reasonable for an employer to dismiss an employee ifasked to do so by a client or customer?Bancroft had raised concerns that hostel staff left sharp knives in the sink and smokedwhen passing through the kitchen, which led to a difficult relationship with theManager, Mr Laughton. Mr Laughton raised a variety of minor matters with Interserveabout Bancroft’s conduct with the intention of getting Interserve to discipline him, butno disciplinary action was ever taken. Later, another member of hostel staffcomplained about Bancroft and he was suspended and ultimately issued with a finalwritten warning.Meanwhile, Mr Laughton wrote to the Home Office demanding that Bancroft not beallowed to return to the hostel regardless of the outcome of the disciplinary hearing asthere had been a breakdown in the relationship. The Home Office invoked their rightto request his removal.June 7 2010
  24. 24. Bancroft v InterserveAs a result, Bancroft was suspended again, but no efforts were made by Interserve topersuade the Home Office to change its mind and was advised by HR to take noaction other than to accept the request for Bancroft’s removal.They tried to redeploy Bancroft, but he refused as it would have meant a 30 milejourney and lower wages due to working less hours.The EAT disagreed with the ET and said that Interserve should have taken stepsearlier to try and resolve the issues before events that led to his dismissal. The casewas remitted to the ET to make further findings of fact and reach a conclusion on thefairness in the light of those facts.The case is a timely reminder that an employer cannot simply dismiss at the behest ofa third party without first taking all reasonable steps to seek to mitigate the injusticecaused to the employee and to make sure it picks up and deals with problems as theyarise rather than wait until it all comes crashing down.June 7 2010
  25. 25. June 7 2010
  26. 26. Change Partner Consultancy Providing tailored HR, Payroll & Legal Practice Management services Advice and guidance for Employees to resolve workplace disputes www.changepartner.co.uk 01202 377270Dec 13 2010

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