Q: As a manager, I always strive to maintain a professional demeanor in discussions with employees. But when critical and judgmental people try to twist the meaning of my words, I tend to freeze and shut down. This ends the conversation and keeps me from achieving my objective. What can I do about this? – Manager
I love the advice Marie McIntre gives “When someone tries to divert you by distorting your remarks, say, ‘That’s not what I meant,’ and then repeat your comments and refocus the conversation.” I would add that this individual should find a mentor who can help him practice taking a stand with these critical and judgmental employees. Some people only respect authority when that authority is clearly demonstrated. If this is a professional agency where individuals are licensed, I would recommend they take a continuing educational course in active listening.