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7 Powerful Performance Conversation Starters

Have performance conversations so frequently that they feel natural.

Repetition builds confidence and culture.

Cheer, clap, and pat:

If you wait until something goes wrong to give positive feedback, it’s too late. I’m referring to practice of sandwiching negative feedback between two slices of positive feedback – the sh*t sandwich.

Performance conversations feel like punishment if you wait for failure to have them.

Honor what you want. Do you want energy? Cheer when you see it. Do you want responsibility? Clap when people take it.

Don’t make people feel they’ve arrived. Invite them to believe they can reach higher.

7 powerful performance conversation starters:

#1. Evaluate processes or systems.

#2. Discuss results.

#3. Analyze decisions.

#4. Explore relationships.

#5. Look for Fulfillment.

#6. Investigate development.

#7. Uncover learning – provide time for reflection.


Seek lots of feedback if you expect to give lots of feedback.

Invite people to evaluate your performance.

How might leaders establish performance conversation rituals?

What makes performance conversations fail? Successful?

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