In my career, I routinely jump on opportunities that need solutions. Sometimes a team is stuck on an idea, or a project is moving slower than anticipated. Often, someone’s feeling have been hurt because their plan has been rejected, and they’re emotional about it.
When I step into these types of meetings, I’m often greeted by frustrated team members. And it’s not a pleasant environment. Perhaps you’ve faced similar situations in and out of the office – someone is stuck.
So how do you get them out of their rut without seeming pushy, insensitive, and bossy? Over the years, I’ve found these four phrases can greatly improve a person’s mood and enable them to move forward, whether that be finding a solution, or emotionally letting something go.
1. How Can I Help?
Offering to help is a sympathetic step in telling someone that you feel their pain and support their effort to work towards a solution. It may be a short or long term form of assistance, and anything you can do will be greatly appreciated. Often, they don’t need anything and can accomplish the task on their own, they just need someone that believes and understands their struggle.
2. What Can I Do Right Now To Help You?
So many times, a person or team is upset because they simply get overwhelmed by the big picture. By breaking it down and asking what small step you can aid in immediately, the task or problem may seem less daunting and help them kick start the motivation needed to tackle it head on.
3. Is There Someone I Can Connect You With To Help?
Perhaps you aren’t the best person to help solve their problems. But you may know someone that can. By extending a hand to help introduce the person or team suited to fix whatever is wrong, you are aiding in finding a resolution.
4. Why Is This Upsetting To You?
More often that not, someone just needs to vent out their problems and frustrations to start feeling better. If you’re like me, you hold in what’s bothering you because you don’t want to seem like a complainer. And all that tension builds up like a rocket.
Just being there to open the door of communication and listen to their problem (don’t offer any solution or suggestions) may be just what they need. When they vent the problem out-loud, they just me able to find a solution themselves.