Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Select Page

Crucial Conversations

Crucial Conversations

In our last session for the school year, we had the opportunity to learn from our great leaders at Holdsworth. To piggyback off Julia Funk’s Listening as a Leadership Strategy from earlier this month, Crucial Conversations and Listening go hand in hand. Not just in education, but in our daily lives, we tend to put off or avoid those uncomfortable situations.

Identifying a Crucial Conversation

What makes a conversation difficult, and how does one know when you are in one? Critical discussions take place when there are opposing opinions, strong emotions, and high stakes. Anyone can remember a conversation where they wished things had gone differently.

 Preparing for a Crucial Conversation

  1. Identify your Motive

The first thing that can deteriorate a crucial conversation is not behavior, but our motive. When thinking about your motivation, there are unhealthy and healthy motives. If the purpose of the talk is to be right, to save face, blame or avoid conflict, then the reason is harmful. If the use of the discussion is to learn the truth, produce results, or strengthen the relationship, then the intent is a healthy one. So before having that essential conversation, start with the heart and ask:  What is it that I want from this situation for myself, others, the relationship, or the school? What would my behavior look like if I wished these things? Change what you want, and you will change how you act.

  1. Separate Fact from Story

Part of what makes a crucial conversation hard is opposing opinions. It is effortless to assume, judge, or jump to conclusions when we think about what we see or hear. Stories are guesses that happen in the blink of an eye, and many times we do not even know we have created a “story” in our heads. It is so important to stick to something that happens and can be proven.

  1. Plan for the Process

Before you have that crucial conversation, there must be a process for mutual understanding.

  • Start with the facts: “I noticed…”
  • Temporarily tell your story: “I am starting to think that…”
  • Stop your path, and ask for theirs: “Can you help me understand…”

Crucial conversations are going to be hard. I hope that before you have that critical conversation, you take yourself through these steps. Separate stories from facts, listen with curiosity and, safety and trust are pivotal.




Facebook Comments

Best Public Schools in Texas
Klein ISD has an established 81-year history of excellence and innovation in education with unique pathways for EVERY student in our care to ensure learners are college, career, military, and life ready. With recognition for STEM, athletics, fine arts, and academics from highly-esteemed organizations, it is clear that Our Shared Vision of every student entering with a promise and exiting with a purpose is a reality for EVERY student who walks through our doors.

About Klein ISD
Klein ISD is a school district in Klein, Texas located in northwestern Harris County. The district spans approximately 87.5 square miles and serves more than 54,000 students in 33 elementary schools, 10 intermediate campuses, one high school program of choice, and 5 high schools.

Help Us Share Your Story
There are so many incredible individuals in the Klein Family making a lasting impact on our community. We want to recognize and celebrate our leaders and learners that are cultivating talent, building relationships, reimagining learning and making Promise2Purpose a reality daily. Share your story here:

Our Latest Podcasts