No food truck business is immune to workplace tensions: It is inevitable that you will have some difficult conversations with colleagues, staff or customers. Difficult conversations; whether you’re telling a customer why their order is wrong or having to hold a performance review of one of your poorly performing employees are all part of running a food truck business.

Here are three ways to reach a productive outcome, no matter how tough the conversation is.

3 Ways To Survive Those Difficult Conversations

  • Keep it civil. Don’t turn the conversation into a combat with a winner and a loser. Everyone looks bad when the discussion turns toxic.
  • Don’t rehearse. When you know things are going to be tough, it’s tempting to practice what you’re going to say ahead of time. But this is a conversation — not a performance. Instead, know where you stand but be open enough to listen and react.
  • Resist making assumptions. You don’t have access to anyone’s intentions but your own. Don’t assume that you know where your counterpart is coming from or how she views the problem. Instead, ask for her perspective.

It is at these times when communication is most vital to achieving your goals that it breaks down most dramatically. Difficult conversations are scary because in most cases the stakes are high and there is a real cost of failure. Handling difficult conversations requires skill and empathy, but ultimately, it requires the courage to go ahead and do it. The more you get into the habit of facing difficult conversations squarely, the more adept you will become at it.

How do you get past difficult conversations in your food truck? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic. You can share your ideas in the comment section below or on social media. Facebook | Twitter