Posts by Joseph Grenny

Personal or Professional? Thoughts on Workplace Relationships

I’m trying to establish a strictly professional working relationship with my supervisor. I like to have boundaries to limit my personal involvement, but my supervisor wants to have conversations about weekend plans, vacation updates, and so on. They also continually talk with me and my coworkers about their health challenges and medical details. This makes me uncomfortable. I’ve shared my feelings about their behavior, but things have not changed. How do I respectfully share my communication preferences?

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Do the Crucial Conversations Skills Work for Everyone—Regardless of Race, Gender, or Power?

Dear Trainer Talk, I have used and taught the Crucial Conversations skills for years but have recently wondered whether the skills are more reflective of how white professionals feel comfortable (or safe) addressing disagreement. A few learners have expressed this concern. Could it be that the skills taught in Crucial Conversations do not work for …

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Who’s Responsible for Psychological Safety in a Crucial Conversation?

Recently I was teaching Crucial Conversations to a group and we were practicing how to establish psychological safety when one of the learners asked, “What should you do if you don’t feel safe during a conversation?” I muddled through a response but I’m not sure I really answered the question. The course teaches us how to help others feel psychologically safe during a Crucial Conversation, but what should you do if you feel psychologically unsafe?

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How to Work with a Domineering Boss

I have a domineering boss who micromanages everything I do. He has no filter when speaking to me and often is just outright rude. Whenever I send out a piece of work, he finds fault with it and tries to undermine my confidence. Having read online about his characteristics, I truly believe he suffers from narcissism. The sad fact is that he gets results and senior management love him, so he is untouchable. How can I deal with this aside from leaving the company?

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How to Get Your Team to Accept Change

How do I get my team to accept change? The changes I am trying to implement ensure we stay compliant. We went over these changes to processes well in advance, yet several of my team members are now resistant, passive-aggressive, and have ignored the changes. One person is especially difficult. She expressed her dislike for me and my personality in a one-on-one meeting. When I asked her if she can at least be professional, she shrugged her shoulders.

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