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Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High [Paperback]

Kerry Patterson , Joseph Grenny , Ron McMillan , Al Switzler
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)

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Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition 4.4 out of 5 stars (66)
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Book Description

June 18 2002
When stakes are high, opinions vary, and emotions run strong, you have three choices: Avoid a crucial conversation and suffer the consequences; handle the conversation badly and suffer the consequences; or read Crucial Conversations and discover how to communicate best when it matters most. This wise and witty guide gives you the tools you need to step up to life's most difficult and important conversations, say what's on your mind, and achieve positive outcomes that will amaze you.


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Product Description

Review

"What a profound and timely book! Here is the cure for arguments and misunderstandings; for mediocrity and frustration. This book offers a wealth of principles and skills that will dramatically improve your career, your organization, and your relationships." Stephen R. Covey

From the Back Cover

"Most books make promises. This one delivers. These skills have . . . generated new techniques for working together in ways that enabled us to win the largest contract in our industry's history."
--Dain M. Hancock, President, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics

Learn how to keep your cool and get what you want when emotions flare.

When stakes are high, opinions vary, and emotions run strong, you have three choices: Avoid a crucial conversation and suffer the consequences; handle the conversation badly and suffer the consequences; or read Crucial Conversations and discover how to communicate best when it matters most. This wise and witty guide gives you the tools you need to step up to life's most difficult and important conversations, say what's on your mind, and achieve positive outcomes that will amaze you. You'll learn how to:

  • Prepare for high-impact situations with a six-minute mastery technique
  • Make it safe to talk about almost anything
  • Be persuasive, not abrasive
  • Keep listening when others blow up or clam up
  • Turn crucial conversations into the action and results you want

Whether they take place at work or at home, with your neighbors or your spouse, crucial conversations can have a profound impact on your career, your happiness, and your future. With the skills you learn in this book, you'll never have to worry about the outcome of a crucial conversation again.


Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
When people first hear the term "crucial conversation," many conjure up images of presidents, emperors, and prime ministers seated around a massive table while they debate the future of the world. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I bought this book after I heard Dr. Glickman, the author of Optimal Thinking-How To Be Your Best Self, recommend it during an Optimal Thinking seminar. When I read that Dr. Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, recommended this book too I knew that this was going to be a life-changing book for me. I was right. This book has given me a formula for handling myself and others correctly during tough interactions. I am embarrassed to admit that I sometimes yelled and degraded people when I did not get what I wanted from them. Now I use optimal thinking to put my best self in charge, start with heart, look for safety problems, make it safe, retrace my path, and take the other steps recommended in this book. The steps are simple and clear. I am not perfect at them yet, and might never be, but I have already come a long way. You can't go wrong with this book, so press the "Buy" button right now, and if you want to optimize your effectiveness in all areas of life, buy the other books I mentioned.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
What is a crucial conversation?

According to the authors, opinions vary, the stakes are high, and emotions run strong. This can involve ending a relationship, asking a friend to repay a loan, giving the boss feedback about bad behavior, critiquing a colleague's work, or giving an unfavorable performance review.

You have three choices about such conversations. You can avoid the conversations, face them poorly, or face them well.

This book focuses on the last, providing practical advice about how to keep your own cool while encouraging everyone else to do she same. You can save a lot of time in reading and understanding the book if you look at figures 10-1 through 10-4 beginning on page 182 before you get very far. It's a helpful overview of the authors' point of view.

The book's strengths come in the authors' sympathy with those who have trouble holding such conversations, the many examples and advice on how to deal with difficult situations.

The book's main weakness comes in a desire to encapsulate the key lessons into ACRONYMS like STATE and ABCs. While they are nifty acronyms, I couldn't remember what they stood for by the next page. Something more visual at each stage would have helped me out.

I also think that the book would have benefited from more advice on how to be empathic with the other people involved.

But if you normally handle such situations by running the other way, screaming or slamming the door, this book will help you develop much more constructive habits that will leave you feeling better about yourself.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding tool that gets results! July 7 2004
Format:Paperback
As a coach to both individuals and groups, I see the very costly problems in the workplace that result from the important conversations that are not occurring because they are too hard or scary. The cost includes harm to relationships, careers and the bottom line. Both executives and high performance teams have been derailed by not addressing the dead elephants in the room. Crucial Conversations is absolutely the best book on the subject of difficult and critical communication. The book is very well organized, presenting clear steps to create an environment in which the hard conversation can happen. There are so many tools in this book that if it were not so well organized and presented in stages, the reader would be overwhelmed. The authors handle this very well - you can tell there was experience and expertise in adult learning informing the structure of the book. Why my clients and I become so excited about the book is its immediate results. You can start using the concepts and skills before you have finished the book! The foundations of making the environment safe - even for someone you may not like or respect is particularly effective. I have been very pleased with the results I have experienced - as well as my clients. Every leader should have this book on their bookshelf!
A bonus to readers is the continued support from the authors on their website described in the book. There is a wealth of additional information, interactive reviews, assessments and even video vignettes that illustrate the learning points with relevance and humor. For those truly smitten, there are training courses available to assist in obtaining personal mastery or even to teach the material if desired. I recommend this book and Primal Leadership to top-level executives in the federal government and private sector. I, and they, have never been disappointed at the difference it has made. Enjoy!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Packed With Knowledge! June 11 2004
Format:Paperback
Wanna argue? Nope. Then you need Kerry Patterson and his co-writers, who describe techniques for effective negotiation and conflict resolution in the context of important, potentially life-changing conversations. Examples include talking yourself into a promotion, bringing up important information at meetings and working out problems with your spouse. Some tips will sound familiar, such as knowing what you really want and being open to alternatives. However, the book also highlights some themes that are often forgotten in negotiations, such as making it safe for others to express their true feelings and desires. The authors explain how to avoid getting forced into false either-or choices and tell you how to remain alert for unstated alternatives or possibilities. This lively book includes many examples drawn from business and personal relationships. We recommend it in particular to those are new to negotiations and conflict resolution, though it teaches solid skills that any manager - or any marriage partner, for that matter - could benefit from mastering.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I also bought the audio book. It offered insight ...
I also bought the audio book. It offered insight, specific life examples and concrete doable steps for reflections and actions.
Published 11 days ago by Pei Ching
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read!
Great book to start acquiring skills that are very useful in relationships of any kind.
Published 16 days ago by Mafik326
1.0 out of 5 stars I did not enjoy this book
I did not enjoy this book. It went on and on and on about how wonderful the book is and how everyone would benefit from the gems in this book the author never got down to... Read more
Published 21 days ago by Deb Young
5.0 out of 5 stars Can you see yourself?
I wish I had this book years ago! The author described situations I had found myself in, repeatedly and had not known what to do or I had forgotten. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Carolyn Cornish
5.0 out of 5 stars Great learnings...
Recommended for all leaders. Useful for personal & professional life.
Published 1 month ago by BookReviewer
2.0 out of 5 stars Video links not working...
Very inconvenient to use links to access video resources - i keep trying but it doesn't work. I hope someone can get back with me to help me fox the glitches....
Published 3 months ago by AyGur
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!
This is the kind of book that you keep on your desk and refer to it whenever you feel the need to. I love how they separated the sections. Very good book
Published 6 months ago by Julien Messier
5.0 out of 5 stars valuable tool
My manager loaned me a copy of this. It is so useful I bought a copy for myself and have loaned it to my staff.
Published 11 months ago by Annemarie Balfour
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended!
I am still around chapter 8, but I find it extremely useful and I wanted to second others' recommendations for checking out this book. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Irini
4.0 out of 5 stars a little bit disappointed
The tactics offered in the book are bit too general.
Hopefully they can cater to people with various needs of crucial conversation toolkit
Published on Feb. 4 2012 by Wang Zhongyi
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