Face to Face Conversation Tips for Employees

Do... Avoid...


  • Be approachable
  • Listen to understand
  • Be open minded
  • Be specific; use examples
  • Acting defensive
  • Not taking responsibility
  • Blaming others
  • Using “always” and “never”

Ask Questions

  • Actively listen without interrupting
  • Ask questions when things aren’t clear
  • Ask for specific examples
  • Talk about what you need to do your job
  • Interrupting or finishing someone’s sentence
  • Jumping to conclusions
  • Thinking about how you will respond while the other person is talking
  • Making assumptions


  • Actively participate in the conversation
  • Value different points of view
  • Communicate in a professional manner
  • Holding things back
  • Dodging uncomfortable issues
  • Minimizing your contribution
  • Only participating when you disagree

Explore Options

  • Take the initiative and offer suggestions
  • Create mutually agreed upon actions and time lines
  • Be realistic
  • Discuss professional development needs
  • Offer solutions
  • Ignoring problems
  • Being resistant to change
  • Comparing yourself to other employees
  • Dwelling on the past
  • Being closed minded when exploring solutions