Having difficult conversations is, well ... difficult, but Catherine B. Soehner and Ann Darling make it a bit easier in their book, Effective Difficult Conversations: A Step-by-Step Guide. This text by ALA Editions does not claim to be a self-help book; rather it aims to “bring something new to the discussion while focusing on having ‘difficult’ conversations in your professional life” (p. xii). The authors give examples of difficult conversations: those dealing with hiring and promotion, performance, tasks that need to be done, and tasks or behaviors that may need to stop. They define which types of difficult conversations you may need to have and which may not be your responsibility. The authors describe not just the types of conversations you might need to have, but what might go wrong when you do have those conversations: an unwanted emotional response, rejection, or making a bad situation worse. At a little over 100 pages, Soehner and Darling deal primarily with issues in an academic library setting, although their recommendations can easily be adapted to other professional settings.
O'Reilly, M. (2020). In Review: Effective Difficult Conversations: A Step-by-Step Guide. Urban Library Journal, 26 (1). Retrieved from https://academicworks.cuny.edu/ulj/vol26/iss1/1