difficult conversations

Difficult Customer Complaints

Sign warning that we will not tolerate physical or verbal abuse

What are difficult customer complaints? All complaints hurt, especially when you care deeply about your business or organisation. The more you care, the more painful it is. When we are hurt, the natural reaction is to either hit back or run away. Both will make things worse in the long run. And when customers’ behaviour…

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Caring for Elderly Parents: A Source of Conflict?

Caring for elderly parents may bring a family together or tear them apart. As life expectancy grows, people in their 60s and 70s are still caring for parents, despite their own declining health.  People work for much longer now, often providing childcare for their grandchildren. Tiredness, ill health and family arguments add to the stress.…

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Manage annoyances well & avoid major problems

manage annoyances well

I’ve written before about how random acts of kindness can make a huge difference to others and boost your own happiness. In this blog, I’ll write about how little things can cause big problems. Like a dropped match that lights a wildfire, small irritations, if not addressed, can flare into major confrontations. Manage annoyances well…

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Making Difficult Conversations Easier

Making Difficult Conversations Easier Most people would prefer me to write about getting rid of the need for awkward discussions, rather than about making difficult conversations easier.  This is no more possible than waving a magic wand and get rid of all the ice and snow in winter. However, just as we can lessen the…

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Personality Clash: Sandpaper People

Sandpaper People

Have you ever had a personality clash with someone? When just the sight of them starts you prickling? What can you do if it is someone you have to interact with? This might be at work, or socially because they are relatives or friends. A personality clash can really disrupt your life and impact on…

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How to manage difficult people

difficult people the grinch

I’m often asked how to manage difficult people, especially at this time of year, when we feel obliged to interact with people we normally avoid. If only life was like the story of the  Grinch who stole Christmas. via GIPHY With a bit of magic and a different viewpoint, horrible people could be transformed into lovely…

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Neighbour Problems: How to avoid them

A5 Get Your Story StraightNeighbour problems steal your sanity. They turn mild-mannered people into raging tigers.  Too often, minor issues become major ones and the problem escalates.  So how can we avoid getting caught up in disputes with our neighbours? What are the most common issues that cause neighbour problems? What can we do if problems…

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Won’t Pay or Can’t Pay?

People who won’t pay cause small business owners more hassle than any other issue. Years ago, my husband and I owned a quick print business. I hadn’t realised how much chasing payment impacted my life until I overheard my daughter (6) and a friend playing shops: “Now we’ll just close the shop and then I will…

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When they won’t talk…

They won’t talk. We keep going in circles…I can’t do anything.  As a mediator, I’m often asked ” But what can I do if they won’t talk to me? ” They feel stuck because the other people involved don’t want to talk. It’s frustrating and aggravating. And if you really believe that you can’t do anything,…

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Prevent Harm: Conflict First Aid 2

prevent harm conflict resolution

The aim of conflict first aid is to protect what is important, prevent harm and promote restoration of relationships.  As in medical first aid, there are simple steps that anyone can do to make sure the situation doesn’t deteriorate. My last blog gave 3 tips on how to protect what is important.  Those of you who…

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