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The Power of Positive Conversation

You may have heard that one of the secrets to both professional and personal success is clear communication. But this doesn’t mean just any type of communication: The one thing you want to pull out first from your talking tool-kit is friendliness.

Here are three moments where approaching a person in a friendly manner will not only help you avoid conflict but also help you create successful interactions:

  • Best Client Practices: You may be a meeting with a client, who wants to know more about her financial status. Do not start the meeting by getting right down to talking about business, or worse, by pushing products and services on her right away. Instead, start with friendly conversation. You get to know your clients better, which makes them feel valued, comfortable, and thus more open to what you have to say. Your friendly interaction will also better enable you to address their unique needs.
  • A Teaching Moment: Maybe you are a parent, and your child just made a mess in an area he or she was explicitly told to keep neat. While it may be very upsetting to see valuables in disarray, restrain your feelings of anger. If you yell at your child, their future behavior will be motivated by fear. Take a deep breath, and use calm tones to open a dialogue where the child understands why their behavior was wrong.
  • Effective Leadership: If you as a leader are concerned that a subordinate’s behavior is threatening a project or breaking company protocol, consider approaching them in a friendly way, rather than using an angry or disciplinary tone. People are far less likely to listen to you if they dislike you or feel the need to defend themselves against a negative assessment. By using a calm tone and taking time to check in with an individual before approaching a tough topic, they will understand that any concern you raise has their best interests in mind.

A friendly attitude will benefit you in more than just your interpersonal interactions. You deserve to treat yourself as you treat others; if you are trying to make a change in your personal or financial habits, but see yourself struggling to meet your goals, don’t beat yourself up.

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