In the current climate of remote work, difficult work conversations have become even more challenging to navigate. The lack of in-person interactions and nonverbal cues can make it harder to understand the tone and intent behind messages, leading to misunderstandings and conflicts. However, with the right approach, it is possible to have difficult work conversations remotely and maintain productive working relationships.
The first step in having a difficult work conversation remotely is to prepare. This means setting clear objectives for the conversation, identifying the specific issues that need to be addressed, and thinking through how you want to phrase your concerns. It’s also important to consider the tone and communication style that will be most effective in the remote setting.
Set Clear Boundaries
Another important aspect of having difficult work conversations remotely is to set clear boundaries. This means identifying what topics are off-limits and what types of communication are not acceptable. For example, it may be appropriate to have a frank conversation about a work-related issue over email, but it may not be appropriate to discuss personal issues in the same way.
Use Appropriate Tools and Platforms
Another consideration when having difficult work conversations remotely is to be mindful of the tools and platforms that are used. For example, using video conferencing software can be a great way to improve communication and understanding, as it allows for real-time interactions and nonverbal cues.
Be Open and Transparent
In addition, it is important to be open and transparent. This means being willing to listen to the other person’s perspective, and being honest about your own thoughts and feelings. It’s also important to be respectful and avoid personal attacks or criticism.
Follow Up and Follow Through
Another key thing to keep in mind is to have a plan to follow up and follow through on any action items that come out of the difficult work conversation. This can include scheduling follow-up meetings or touchpoints, and setting clear expectations for what needs to be done and by when.
Difficult Work Conversations Are Normal
Finally, remember that difficult work conversations are a normal part of any working relationship, and it’s important to address issues as they arise.
Rent a Coworking Space
By preparing, setting boundaries, using appropriate tools and platforms, being open and transparent, following through on action items and remembering that it’s normal to have difficult conversations, you can navigate difficult work conversations remotely and maintain valuable working relationships.
One way to ensure that difficult work conversations take place in an appropriate setting is to rent a coworking space. Coworking spaces provide a professional setting for remote workers to come together, collaborate and communicate in person. This can be especially beneficial for having difficult conversations, as it provides an opportunity for face-to-face interaction and nonverbal cues, which can help to improve understanding and build trust.
In conclusion, remote work has its own set of challenges and difficulties when it comes to having difficult work conversations. But with proper planning, communication style, setting boundaries and renting a coworking space, it’s possible to navigate these challenges and have a work relationship stronger than ever.