Daryl Conner

October 25, 2011

You Can Measure the “Toughness” of a Conversation

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In my last post, I said that it’s sometimes necessary to have uncomfortable conversations with clients in order to keep the change initiative on track toward realization. But how much uneasiness is enough? How much is too much? In this post, I describe a “discomfort continuum” that I use to determine the answers to these questions.

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October 18, 2011

How to Have a Tough Conversation

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As change practitioners, we’ve learned skills that help us facilitate discussions, guide conversations, and manage relationships with our clients. We hope things go smoothly and that both we and the client have relatively comfortable interactions as the change process unfolds. For the most part, we prefer to avoid any tough, unsettling discussions.

There are times however, when keeping everything smooth won’t yield the results we need. Sometimes we have to go into a zone that is uncomfortable for the other person. There is no other way, if we want to serve our client and create the value we agreed to provide. In this series, I’ll describe how to plan for, and conduct, a tough conversation.

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October 11, 2011

Guest Interview—Mel Toomey

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Mel is one of the few change practitioners who can honestly measure his contribution to our field in decades, but the extensive time he’s devoted to understanding the dynamics of change pales when compared to what he has learned and passed on to countless others. His insights and perspectives go far beyond knowledge of concepts and techniques—he is a source of true wisdom.

The first time I heard Mel speak, I found his views on leadership and change to be penetrating, challenging, and compelling. Over the years, he has been an important resource for my development and it’s an honor to have this opportunity to introduce him to those who might not be familiar with his work.

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October 4, 2011

How to Be Direct and Explicit When Reframing Others

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In this series, I’ve been describing the skills required (there are five of them) to reframe a person’s mindset during a change initiative. In this post, I’ll talk about the final skill—the willingness to confront. For many change facilitators, it’s the most difficult part of the reframing process.

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