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Difficult Conversations: Go From Tiptoe to Tango

New Horizons Learning Center
9800 SW Nimbus Ave
Beaverton, OR 97008, US (map)



It’s a fact of life – some conversations are simply more difficult to have than others. We tend to avoid tiptoe around or completely avoid addressing difficult, yet important, topics. Difficult conversations in the workplace can include:

  • Speaking up in a meeting
  • Disagreeing with someone
  • Asking for something you want
  • Providing or responding to critical feedback
  • Delivering bad news

Our anxiety around having difficult conversations can lead to avoiding the conversation altogether or to holding it in a way which is ineffective or even destructive to the relationship. When in a leadership role, avoiding difficult conversations can significantly sabotage others’ trust in you; productivity of yourself, your team, and the organization; as well as retention of valuable staff and customers.