Advice on Managing Difficult Conversations

November 2012

The ability to be able to talk about very sensitive and emotive issues is an integral part of effective line management and can be critical to managing performance, promoting attendance and improving team dynamics. These difficult conversations should not be avoided.

There are some very practical steps you can take to help you handle these conversations better and, where possible, get the right outcome for you, the employee and the organisation.

This guide will help you to stay in control of:

  • the situation, by putting clear boundaries in place
  • your emotions, by giving you the confidence to face whatever problem comes your way
  • the action you plan to take.
Further information and help

If you require further information or help with this publication please contact us

Telephone Enquiry Point

The Agency’s Enquiry Point is available to employers, employees, trade unions and others. Enquiry Point advisors provide information and advice on a wide range of employment matters. The Enquiry Point is also an important contact point for identifying circumstances, or clients, who would benefit from being referred to other Agency services.

The Enquiry Point provides clear, confidential, independent and impartial advice to assist the caller in resolving issues in the workplace.

While the advisors cannot provide a legal opinion they can help callers gain a better understanding of their rights and responsibilities as well as identifying possible options to help resolve their issues.

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Contact Us

Please note that we cannot deal with employment-related enquiries by e-mail. To receive information or advice about an employment-related issue, please telephone our Helpline on Belfast 90 321442 where an officer will speak with you directly about your query. Please note that the Agency can arrange the services of an interpreter if required.

If you have an employment relations issue in Great Britain please contact the ACAS Helpline on 0300 123 1100 .

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