If you’ve ever wondered how to be diplomatic and tactful: this article is for you.
Perhaps you are a manager who is trying to create a friendlier work culture, or maybe you just want to improve your dispute resolution skills. Diplomacy is about assessing a situation and deciding the best course of action before you speak up or act.
While diplomacy can be challenging in some situations, maintaining tact, defusing stressful situations, and connecting with people can help you maintain your composure.
How To Be Diplomatic And Tactful:
1. Choose your words carefully.
Even if your intentions are perfect, your words can cause harm to others. Before you speak about a difficult topic, ask yourself if what you want to say is true, useful, and kind. Instead of guessing what others are thinking or feeling, use “I” words to explain your views.
For example, instead of saying, “You should be angry about this choice today,” you can say, “I feel uncomfortable about the decision made at today’s meeting.”
Always speak from your own point of view.
Avoid being defensive and pointing fingers at others.
If you need to talk to someone about something important, prepare your comments ahead of time.
2. Adapt your communication style to the circumstances.
Before you deliver your message, make sure you know who you are talking to. This will ensure that it is properly received and understood. Determine whether it is more effective to communicate via email or in person, and whether messages should be delivered in groups or face-to-face.
For example, you may need to inform employees about upcoming budget cuts. You may have used email to communicate confidential information in the past but found that it caused misunderstandings. Instead, call an employee meeting and present the facts, allowing time for questions.
Individual meetings should be scheduled as needed or desired.
3. Be open to new ideas.
Listen to other people’s opinions instead of making your own choices. So thank them for telling you how they feel, and they can do it whenever they want. Take the time to consider other people’s opinions, but stick by your opinion if you feel you made the right decision.
Tom, I appreciate your honesty. I’ll think about what you said about your idea and do some further research. “
4. Use language that expresses confidence.
Don’t be aggressive when talking to people, but be confident. Speak slowly and thoughtfully. When someone speaks, sit with your legs and arms uncrossed and look them in the eye.
Even if you don’t know something, you should admit it. For example, “I’m not sure about this issue and don’t have an answer right now,” but “I will try to research it more thoroughly.”
5. Use thoughtful suggestions.
Instead of instructing others on what to do, suggest. Instead of giving orders, diplomats develop methods to motivate people to act. Your goal should be to work with your team and motivate them to reach their full potential.
“Why don’t you look for a better way to divide the space in your room so you argue less often?” You might suggest this when you are solving a problem between your children.
To an employee who is frequently late, you might reply, “Haven’t you thought about taking the highway to work instead?” In my experience, it’s a little faster that way. If you must say it, say it to someone with whom you have a positive relationship. In some situations, this may be seen as passive-aggressive.
6. Control your etiquette.
Diplomacy relies heavily on excellent manners. Never interrupt people and always wait for your chance to speak. Encourage each other instead of hurling insults. Avoid swearing and shouting, and your voice should be natural and neutral.
7. Control your emotions.
You may have to work with people you don’t like or whose behavior you consider undignified. On the other hand, diplomacy is not limited to the people you get along with. When others stress you out, use deep breathing methods to relax. If you think you’re about to get upset or scream, take a break and go to the bathroom.
To help yourself control your emotions, you may want to use a meditation tool such as an Insight Timer.
You can also try focusing on the present moment. Focus on how your feet feel on the floor and how your buttocks feel on the chair.
SEE ALSO: How To Be More Approachable In Any Situation: 16 Strategies
8. Talk at non-stressful times.
If you must have a serious conversation with someone, do it at a calm moment. This will make it easier for you to have a rational discussion.
9. When delivering terrible news, start with a nice message.
Before delivering the bad news, try to lighten the atmosphere with some kind comment or message. This will help keep the other person calm and build trust.
You may be turning down an invitation to a wedding. Instead of replying simply, “No,” write on a card: “Congratulations on your future wedding! I’m sure it will be a beautiful day. Unfortunately, I cannot attend due to work commitments, but I wish you all the best and will send you my gift. “
Try to do the same with constructive feedback.
10. Pay attention to the reality of the issue.
Consider the facts before giving a long speech. You do not want to start a discussion based on conjecture or opinion, but rather on logic and reason. When speaking, avoid criticizing people or taking a defensive stance. It is important not to take things personally.
There may be a reorganization going on in your workplace. Instead of telling your employer, “I don’t like the changes,” add, “Since sales in our department doubled in the previous quarter, making cuts in this department would significantly reduce our ability to generate profits.”
11. Find strategies for working with others to reach an agreement.
Identify your own and others’ goals. Consider what you want and what the other person wants, and look for areas where your interests intersect.
For example, suppose your husband wants to move so the children can attend a better school. Since it is not near your workplace, you may want to stay. Consider a private school or moving to a nearby city (1).
12. Make your preferences known to create a win-win environment.
After discussing each of your goals, find strategies for agreement. Diplomacy sometimes requires sacrificing some things to achieve other goals. Be willing to do this for the sake of progress and compromise.
Maybe you can make a to-do list for you and your roommate. Perhaps you enjoy doing the dishes but despise outside work. Perhaps your roommate feels the same way. Offer to do the dishes instead of yard work.
13. Remain calm in the face of terrible news.
Perhaps your supervisor has informed you that you will be fired, or your spouse has informed you that they are getting a divorce. Show maturity by keeping your cool instead of yelling, hurling insults, or getting angry. Take a deep breath in and out several times. React positively and take a step back to calm yourself down if necessary.
For example, in a conversation with your employer, you might say, “I’m very sorry to hear about this.” Is there a concrete explanation for this and is it a final decision? “
Don’t use drugs or alcohol to numb or distract yourself from your feelings. Instead, talk to a friend, do something enjoyable, or exercise. If you have problems, consult a therapist or counselor.
14. Be complimentary about others.
Don’t badmouth people when others are gossiping. You may work in a poisoned atmosphere where gossip is common, but don’t contribute to it. Refraining from gossiping shows others that you are an honorable and honest person.
SEE ALSO: How To Not Absorb Other People’s Emotions: 20 Strategies
15. Be truthful and present your true personality to others.
Being authentic is an important aspect of diplomatic behavior. It is important to be honest with people in these difficult conversations. If you don’t, you won’t be able to get what you want and others won’t be able to establish a genuine relationship with you.
You may have made a mistake on a project that affected your team. Instead of passing the buck, say: “I made a mistake in the report and that’s why we had so many calls today.” I apologize for the inconvenience and am working to rectify the situation. Please let me know if you have any questions or need help. “
16. Take a deep breath before saying anything important.
It is best to avoid making tough judgments in the heat of the moment. Instead of saying things you will later regret, take a step back and think.
For example, you may be a supervisor working with an employee who wants to work from home one day a week. Before you immediately answer “no,” consider what their expectations and arguments are. If it’s feasible, find a way to compromise and extend that flexibility to more employees.
17. Have a short conversation to make people feel at ease.
Making people feel at ease is an important part of diplomacy. Rather than immediately getting into a serious conversation, establish a thread of camaraderie with the person. Talk about your weekends, marriages, children, and interests. Talk about the news in the media or what you watch on television. Showing interest in their lives will make them feel at ease.
Instill a sense of humor where possible.
18. Try to imitate their body language.
Get into their shoes by mimicking their movements and posture. Do the same if they are sitting with their hands under their chin. This shows that you are actively participating in the conversation.
Smile at them when you meet them for the first time.
19. Address them by name in conversation.
Using your own name is often received with enthusiasm. Occasionally, in conversation, they use their names.
“Where would you like to have lunch, Mark?” is a basic example. “Kate, I’m so sorry about your dad” when something more tragic is happening.
20. Pay attention to what others are saying.
Avoid using your phone or daydreaming while talking to someone. Instead, pay attention to what others are saying so you can understand what they mean. To be sure you heard what someone said, repeat it back to them.
21. Question them.
To show that you are paying attention, find out more about what the interviewees are talking about. Ask open-ended questions (2) that require more than a yes-or-no answer.
A question like: “Wow, you’ve been to Egypt? What made you want to go there in the first place and what did you like best? “
I want to thank you for taking the time to read my article about how to be diplomatic and tactful. I sincerely hope its contents have been a good help to you.