One of the soft skills most in-demand today: Diplomacy skills. But don’t worry, sometimes “diplomacy” just means knowing what not to say.
We all speak multiple languages. Yes, even those of us who are linguistically challenged. For example: When you were a teenager you spoke one language around your parents, teachers, and other adults and a completely different language with your friends. Sometimes, when you were stressed out or felt like the life of teenager was unfair, you slipped up… and that’s when you got into real trouble.
The same thing often happens in the workplace. We say the wrong thing, we get in trouble. Which means that we must develop the diplomacy skills required to excel at work.
Sharpening Your Diplomacy Skills
Maybe you’ve caused offense by criticizing someone in a less-than-constructive manner. Or perhaps it’s you who’s been criticized and you’ve responded by trying to shift the blame. It’s easy to put your foot in your mouth when you’re working alongside a variety of hard-working people in a stressful environment.
If this sounds like you, don’t worry. It’s possible to speak honestly at work without offending others, but it does take a little shift in perspective. When a problem arises, don’t think about how you can avoid it. Instead, see how you can be a part of the solution.
Acquiring these diplomacy skills won’t happen overnight, which is why it’s great to have a few hints on where to start. This infographic from Headway Capital lists twelve phrases you probably hear at work every day, why they’re unhelpful and what to say instead. After all, in the working world, your career could be at stake… and getting fired is a lot worse than getting grounded for two weeks!
Next time trouble arises at the office, put your diplomacy skills to work. Think before you speak.