The Necessary Conversation – Interview with Lincoln

In this interview I speak with…

Lincoln an employee who has offered to share
his insights about the ‘Necessary Conversation’
from an employee perspective.




Summary of Lincoln’s comments/insights:

It’s important in the conversation for the employee to have:

  • Ownership of the decisions made
  • The ability to contribute and express their insights, desires and concerns
  • A voice
  • A sense this relationship is a partnership and the conversation is about growing and developing that relationship
  • Some part in establishing the path forward

It’s important prior to the conversation that the manager:

  • Shares their information with the employee concerned
  • Doesn’t share that information with other employees
  • Allows time for the employee to read, process, assess, consult others and form a response

From an employee’s perspective:

  • If a conversation is left to the last minute the employee feels pressured to give answers immediately
  • Avoiding the conversation has a poor impact on team morale and allows the underperforming staff member to set the standard in the team. Others see what is now considered acceptable and follow suit. A lack of action by the manager signals the manager prefers the status quo to remain
  • A manager avoids the conversation because they are avoiding the employee’s reaction and/or don’t really want to bring about change
  • An employee wants their manager to be open and friendly. A different approach/behaviour to normal will raise the employee’s barriers

Key take away tips from Lincoln:

  • Give the employee the opportunity to contribute their insights and to make decisions
  • Don’t leave the conversation to the last minute. Allow timing for the employee to receive the information and prepare a response BEFORE the meeting
  • Employees want to have shared goals because the success of the workplace relationship requires both parties to work together with the same approach
  • The employee (their skill, situation, experiences, needs etc) changes over time. An employee wants to share and explain this and see some adaptation from the manager
  • Employees actually want positive outcomes for themselves and their employer
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About the Author

Catherine Gillespie brings a wealth of skill to her clients. With particular expertise in teaching communication and workplace conflict resolution skills, Catherine has made a marked difference to the organisations she has worked with. She empowers teams and managers to adopt constructive styles that support harmony, productivity and progress in the workplace.