How to avoid a difficult conversation

Do you what the most common ethical dilemma I face is?

It’s when my Thinker tells me they want to quit their job.

The job that belongs to the organisation, paying for the coaching.




But’s it not a problem.

Wanna know why?

Because I have a grown-up conversation with the organisation to agree on what will happen if that arises.

And it usually goes like:

  • This isn’t a reason to break confidentiality.
  • I’ll honour the obligations I have with both parties by exploring what would need to change for the Thinker to stay.
  • If they still want to leave I work with them to find a way that is positive for both parties.
  • I won’t (unless the organisation gives me permission) coach the Thinker in exploring what next.


No organisation has pushed back on any of this and all have given permission for the last point.

I’m telling you all this for a couple of reasons:


1. Difficult conversations are easier or averted when you agree on how to handle hard things before they happen

It’s as awkward as a secondary school dance but the stress reduction is worth it.

Like when my sister-in-law came to live with us in our one-bed flat in Brixton. We took her out to dinner and had a chat about how we would use the lounge/her bedroom and how we’d raise any issues.

Fast forward 5 months and I’m bawling my eyes out cos I don’t want her to leave.

When I’m faced with a situation where my Thinker is about the quit, I know the organisation isn’t going to be mad at me, we’ve pre-agreed what will happen.


2. You’ve got nothing to lose if you just ask

It is bloody scary having the “Warning, side effects of coaching may include resignation” talk with paying clients.

ut they didn’t bat an eye, they get it (I do work with some super awesome organisations).

So if you’re sitting there thinking I wish my job was more elephant washing and less feeding, then ASK!

Your boss isn’t a mind reader.

You’ve nothing to lose, either you stay and get want you want or you get the fuel to leave and get what you want.

On that note, leaders listen!

Don’t make loyal employees feel like they have to quit to get the same opportunities as new hires.

ASK your people what they want to be doing more of and less of and then support them to make it happen.

Want tips to help you use coaching principles to make stuff better, in your inbox every Sunday?
A banner advising that Think Like A Coach is available for sale now.

Order here

Want practical coach ideas that you can use everyday?

This website stores cookies on your computer. Cookie Policy