DON’T walk away – LEADERSHIP communication when ATTACKED
Recent video footage of the Australian Prime Minister walking away from bush fire victims at Cobargo has earned him widespread condemnation.
Scott Morrison had hoped for a photo opportunity but instead faced hostile questioning. His response was unedifying.
Unexpected hostility is something we all face.
Here are techniques on how to deal with hostility – like a leader:
When attacked, don’t walk away. Squarely face the person and hold eye contact. Fully hear out the person.
Maintain your composure.
Listen intently to the words and attend to the feelings of the person.
Respond to what you’ve heard and to the feelings of the person – with dignity.
Communicate your ideas in a concise, clear manner with a measured cadence.
Don’t make yourself into a victim. Don’t seek to ingratiate yourself with the person. (For example, in Morrison’s case, reaching out and touching a person’s hand, to ‘force’ the person to shake your hand).