Raising Your Executive Presence in Conflict Situations

As much as many of us would like to run for the hills when faced with conflict, it’s part and parcel of our daily business world. Indeed, how you handle difficult situations could even determine your suitability for more senior positions especially with management responsibilities.

Here are the top eight behaviors of people that possess executive presence―the magical aura that turns heads, commands respect and trust, and inspires others―when confronted with difficult conversations.

  1. They keep their emotions in check.
  2. They are relentlessly hopeful and honest about resolving the situation.
  3. They are comfortable with silence and the discomfort that can come with difficult conversations.  They don’t feel like they have to fill air space.
  4. They communicate with warmth and strength (especially important for women who have a narrower band of acceptable communication).
  5. They know what they want to say and rehearse and paraphrase their thoughts, so that it comes out conversationally and naturally.
  6. They ignore rules such as, “For every one piece of negative feedback, give four pieces of good feedback,” which only serve to diffuse the message.
  7. Their intention is not to shame, guilt or embarrass but to address the problem and fix it.
  8. They’re decisive and deal with it. They know if they procrastinate and don’t deal with it, they will likely end up carrying it.

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