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DAVID SUMMERTON CONSULTING

Management Excellence: strength through using our differences #Management

How To Break Bad News

How To Break Bad News

All managers have to break bad news – it is simply part of the job because you cannot be an agent of delight all of the time! Redundancy, mergers, demotions, disciplinary meetings, change processes or just plain failure it has to be communicated.

Dismissals are also painful processes for both sides as is counselling and giving staff news that they do not want to hear.

Having a difficult conversation is a real skill that comes from practice and subtlety. It also requires considerable ability in using emotional intelligence and solid preparation.

The following 10 Points should help:

  • Prepare fully for the meeting and choose the right person to break the news
  • Always opt for one to one whenever possible
  • Avoid excessive pleasantries and get straight to the issue at hand
  • Be gentle – there is no point creating more upset than there will inevitable be present
  • Deliver and then let the message sink in
  • Listen fully and attentively
  • Allow the recipient let off steam – they will need to do this
  • Anticipate the questions that will inevitably come from the meeting – try to map out what these might be and what your answers will be
  • Always spend time checking that what you have said has been understood
  • Arrange a follow-up meeting if this is necessary

Good Luck!

For more details of our services visit the website www.davidsummertonconsulting.co.uk

 

 

 

10 Tips For Having A Difficult Conversation

10 Tips For Having A Difficult Conversation

All managers have to break bad news – it is simply part of the job because you cannot be an agent of delight all of the time! Redundancy, mergers, demotions, disciplinary meetings, change processes or just plain failure it has to be communicated.

Dismissals are also painful processes for both sides as is counselling and giving staff news that they do not want to hear.

Having a difficult conversation is a real skill that comes from practice and subtlety. It also requires considerable ability in using emotional intelligence and solid preparation.

The following 10 Points should help:

  • Prepare fully for the meeting and choose the right person to break the news
  • Always opt for one to one whenever possible
  • Avoid excessive pleasantries and get straight to the issue at hand
  • Be gentle – there is no point creating more upset than there will inevitable be present
  • Deliver and then let the message sink in
  • Listen fully and attentively
  • Allow the recipient let off steam – they will need to do this
  • Anticipate the questions that will inevitably come from the meeting – try to map out what these might be and what your answers will be
  • Always spend time checking that what you have said has been understood
  • Arrange a follow-up meeting if this is necessary

Good Luck!

For more details of our services visit the website www.davidsummertonconsulting.co.uk

 

 

 

6 Top Management Values To Deliver Success

6 Top Management Values To Deliver Success

  • Do the Right Thing: you will know when something is just plain right in just the same way that you will instinctively know when a plan or approach is just plain wrong. Doing the Right Thing is always the correct path.
  • Aim Higher: performance can always be bettered and why shouldn’t this be the norm, rather than the exception?
  • Work Together: how good is your organisation at really harnessing the power of all of its staff? How many members of your Team are really engaged and committed? Take time to investigate this fully to see who is on the outside looking in and then get them involved.
  • Take Ownership: never wait for someone else to get a grip of either a problem or an opportunity. Faint heart never won fair praise!
  • Say It Like It Is: just use plain language and be honest, however difficult that might be. People around you will value this approach and recognise you as someone who can be relied upon.
  • Bring All Of Yourself To The Task: never do anything half-hearted! If you really do not see the value of something or do not want to get involved, don’t!

Good Luck!

For more details about our services visit the website www.davidsummertonconsulting.co.uk

 

How To Successfully Promote BRAND ME

How To Successfully Promote BRAND ME

To get on we all must make the most of our skills and abilities. Unfortunately, BRAND ME is your responsibility and yours alone, so the trick is to make the most of what you have and follow the 5 principles outlined below.

  • Check every three months that your CV is totally up to date so that if that job opening that you have been aiming for suddenly appears you will be ready to make a speedy application.
  • Identify, with clinical accuracy, your skill gaps and seek out training to fill the. This could be paid by your employer or by yourself but always plug the gaps.
  • Add systematically, every month, to your LinkedIn page, join LinkedIn groups and always seek out testimonials from colleagues and customers to boost the relevance of your page. If you do not have a LinkedIn page – get one!
  • Keep networking. Never stop networking. Ever. Even if you are busy always make time to meet people and spread BRAND YOU as far as possible. Having coffee and Lunch are vital times when you can achieve critical connections.
  • Take control of your career. If you are bored and frustrated by your current position you only have yourself to blame! Keep pushing and developing BRAND YOU!

Good Luck!

For more details about our services visit the website www.davidsummertonconsulting.co.uk

 

5 Golden Rules To Successfully Promote BRAND ME

5 Golden Rules To Successfully Promote BRAND ME

To get on we all must make the most of our skills and abilities. Unfortunately, BRAND ME is your responsibility and yours alone, so the trick is to make the most of what you have and follow the 5 principles outlined below.

  • Check every three months that your CV is totally up to date so that if that job opening that you have been aiming for suddenly appears you will be ready to make a speedy application.
  • Identify, with clinical accuracy, your skill gaps and seek out training to fill the. This could be paid by your employer or by yourself but always plug the gaps.
  • Add systematically, every month, to your LinkedIn page, join LinkedIn groups and always seek out testimonials from colleagues and customers to boost the relevance of your page. If you do not have a LinkedIn page – get one!
  • Keep networking. Never stop networking. Ever. Even if you are busy always make time to meet people and spread BRAND YOU as far as possible. Having coffee and Lunch are vital times when you can achieve critical connections.
  • Take control of your career. If you are bored and frustrated by your current position you only have yourself to blame! Keep pushing and developing BRAND YOU!

Good Luck!

For more details about our services visit the website www.davidsummertonconsulting.co.uk

 

How To Deal With A Bad Boss

How To Deal With A Bad Boss

It is a sad fact of life that in the workplace we will all inevitably come across a line manager who is, to put it bluntly, poor. Poor at many things possibly, poor and just a few things possibly, totally poor – very likely.

What does that feel like? It will involve bullying, obsessive behaviour, micromanagement, gate-keeping resources and information, holding back financial rewards, denying training opportunities, avoiding conflict, shifting the blame when things go wrong, stealing the credit for success from those who have actually made that success happen and just generally making you feel insecure and unhappy. It is also very likely that the staff turnover in the area that they are responsible for will dramatically increase, even in times of economic uncertainty and poor job opportunities.

People vote with their feet and it is very true to say that staff leave managers not their organisation.

There are clear links between how we are managed and our resulting levels of motivation, application and dedication to our work.

There are a number of strategies that you can adopt to deal with this which are outlined below:

  • Try to show some sympathy for the line manager.

This may be very difficult at first but it MUST be the starting point for any strategy to deal with the problems that you are facing. What external and internal pressures are they facing to organise and deliver in what could well be very challenging circumstances? This may well explain why they are exhibiting such behaviour and why they have an approach that is making you feel uncomfortable. If you try to practice some Emotional Intelligence techniques when dealing with them you can begin to manage upwards and try to influence how they are behaving and alter their approach. This will not be easy but it is a proven means by which to see the pressures they are facing and to try to assist them in delivering and managing their workloads.

  • How does my position fit into this?

Take a long look at yourself and really, objectively assess what your weaknesses are and how this contributes to the situation. It is very rare indeed for a problem to be SOLELY the responsibility of one party to a disagreement. This can be a difficult process, particularly if you consider that you have been loyal, hard-working and just getting on with tasks to the best of your ability but it HAS to be a factor in the poor working dynamics of the situation.

Where can I improve and what feedback have I received around the working relationship? What parts of my behaviour have helped to create what appears to be a toxic, or near-toxic, working relationship?

What are your colleagues telling you about their working situation? Actively seek out and chat to those members of the team who do not have any problem with the line manager that you are struggling with: get advice from peers as to how best to manage the situation.

Finally, if this does not help, try talking directly to your line manager about the situation. This needs to be prepared carefully and succinctly so that neither of you is offended by the conversation but real ground is covered in the process. Remember to set the questions in a positive manner with the approach that you are seeking some advice and guidance. If this gets you nowhere, despite your best efforts, it is likely that the problem sits not with you!

  • Making Change happen

This is the conversation that you probably do not want to have but which now needs to take place. Remember what you are trying to achieve is a resolution to the problem, not further angst and difficulty.

If a moment like this does not present itself, you have to initiate the conversation yourself. This should be done in private and away from listening ears!  Make sure this is in a neutral location and aim for dialogue and open discussion: prepare your questions beforehand and make sure that they are open questions (i.e. questions that cannot be answered with a simple Yes or No!).

  • Take Collective Action

Where you best and honest attempts at dialogue to get around the problem have failed and your colleagues are of the same opinion than an approach to HR is needed. This comes with a huge degree of caution however as you MUST have a cast iron business case for why you feel the way you do and the imp[act this is having on you, the team and the wider organisation. the thrust here must be on lost productivity and weakened performance for the organisation continuing if nothing changes. Be absolutely clear that making a formal complaint is very much a last resort position and HR will initially at least side with the line manager.

  • Keep your head down and plan to leave as soon as possible

If none of the above work plan to leave, dust off the CV, make applications and resolve to get away from the situation as quickly as is humanly possible. We might hope that the line manager will move on but why wait for something that may, or may not, ever happen. Your destiny here lies in your own hands!

Always remember it is never your fault that you have a poor line manager but staying with one is your fault!

Good Luck!

For more details of our services visit the website www.davidsummertonconsulting.co.uk

 

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