TACTFULNESS

Posted on April 26, 2021 · Posted in Blog, General, Memo Plus Gold, Personal

Learning to use tact in the workplace means fostering better communication between you and your colleagues, as well as your superiors, to push ahead in your career.

Handle conflict with confidence. 

Ensure your body language and words are in sync. You convey a message more tactfully when your body language is “in sync” with your words. When they are not in sync, people will rely on body language. Positive body language includes sitting up straight and making good eye contact. Poor body language includes folding your arms across your chest and staring at the other person or not making eye contact at all. In times of disagreement, always use a warm and sincere tone. Avoid sounding flat, dull or disinterested. Maintain “open” body language: place your hands by your sides throughout the exchange.

Listen actively. 

Tact begins with good listening. While using positive eye contact, remain calm and allow your co-worker to say everything he needs to say; and do not interrupt. After he has aired his concerns or grievance, tactfully paraphrase what he said. Be succinct without rushing or expressing impatience. Tact in the workplace follows the 90/10 rule, listen 90 percent of the time, talk 10 percent of the rest.

Employ the “pause button” when emotions run high during a conflict or personality clash.

Managing your emotions with tact eventually earns the respect of coworkers and bosses, and goes a long way for your reputation. Instead of using anger to emphasize a point, employ positive assertiveness. Avoid sarcasm. Allow the person you disagree with to talk first. If you still disagree, use “I statements” to express your viewpoint. Start with “I see it differently,” rather than “You are not understanding the situation or you are missing the point.” Present your viewpoints and maintain your composure. Step away from the situation if emotions are overwhelming and come back to it once you have gained some calmness and perspective.

Find common ground.

Tact demonstrates maturity and confidence. If you and someone you work with never seems to see eye to eye, find common ground and build more positive experiences around that. It is rare that two people do not have at least one thing in common either in their personalities or work ethic. For example, if you tend to talk fast and use an extensive vocabulary, but the other person speaks slowly with less verbal precision, modify your style of communication to meets the other person’s needs.

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