There’s plenty of Top Tips below, but in a nutshell, in my experience, the best way to prepare for a difficult business call is to gather your thoughts, practice what you want to say out loud, give yourself encouragement and breathe. The tips below will help you – and you know what – you can do this. You know you can.
It’s completely normal to feel nervous about making a difficult business phone call – particularly if it’s an important call that could impact on your future or your success. Many people experience similar emotions when faced with challenging conversations. Here are some tips to help you navigate the call with confidence:
1. Prepare in advance: Take some time to prepare what you want to say during the call. Jot down key points, important details, and any questions or concerns you want to address. Being well-prepared can boost your confidence and help you stay focused.
2. Practice beforehand: Consider rehearsing the conversation with a friend, family member, or even by talking out loud to yourself – ideally into the mirror. Practice can help you feel more comfortable with the content and flow of the call.
3. Control your environment: Choose a quiet and comfortable space for the call where you won’t be distracted. Eliminating potential disturbances can help you concentrate on the conversation and feel more at ease.
4. Take deep breaths: Before making the call, take a few deep breaths to help calm your nerves. Deep breathing can activate the body’s relaxation response and reduce anxiety. Remember to maintain steady breathing throughout the call if you start feeling anxious.
5. Positive self-talk: Remind yourself that you are capable of handling this conversation. Encourage yourself with positive affirmations and remind yourself of past successful experiences. Affirmations like “I can do this” and “I am prepared” can boost your confidence.
6. Start with small talk: If appropriate, you can begin the call with some small talk to establish rapport and ease into the conversation. Engaging in light conversation at the beginning can help you and the other person feel more comfortable before addressing the difficult topic.
7. Active listening: During the call, practice active listening. Pay close attention to what the other person is saying, and take brief notes if it helps you stay focused. Listening actively demonstrates respect and can guide the flow of the conversation.
8. Stay calm and composed: Remember to maintain a calm and composed demeanor throughout the call. Speak clearly and at a moderate pace. If you feel yourself becoming overwhelmed or flustered, take a moment to pause, breathe, and collect your thoughts.
9. Reflect and debrief: After the call, take a few minutes to reflect on how it went. Recognise any positive aspects, areas for improvement, and lessons learned. Use this as an opportunity for growth and development in handling difficult conversations in the future.
Remember, it’s natural to feel nervous, but with preparation and a positive mindset, you can approach the call with confidence. Good luck 🤞
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