Six Step Transformational Conversations

Many people who could have made the biggest difference in my life didn’t.”

@pastorhudson tweeted back, “WOW that’s so true! My question is why? Did they not know? Not care? Not have time?”

I thought, “Great questions?”

Why haven’t they made a bigger difference?

  1. We didn’t go to them?
  2. They didn’t come to us?
  3. They had bigger issues to deal with. We weren’t a priority?
  4. We didn’t realize their valuable till it was too late?
  5. We felt we already had answers but we didn’t?
  6. Perhaps they didn’t know how?

Here’s how to have conversations that make a big difference.

6 steps to transformational conversations:

  1. Listen to their passions and ideas. Ask them to tell their story. Listen for achievements and frustrations. Successes illustrate competencies; frustrations reveal unfulfilled passions.
  2. Repeat it back. Tell them what you hear but don’t pressure them to agree with your initial impressions. Clarify and embrace, again.
  3. Say yes to their hopes. Forget your hopes for them; uncover their hopes for themselves – hopes they don’t yet know they have. Your greatest power is helping others find their greatest hopes. (Tomorrow I’ll explain how to help others have more hope.)
  4. Explore next steps. Avoid eating the whole elephant; help them take a bite. Leadership is always about next steps, always. You aren’t leading till they can explain next steps.
  5. Set the next meeting. Once you find a compelling next step, say, “I’d love to hear how that goes. When can we get together next week?”
  6. Say, “How can I help?” Open doors and share insights but never do for.


Never let distant uncertainties prevent the pursuit of near certainties.


What steps would you add to enhance a transformational conversation?

What can leaders do to make a big difference in the lives of others?