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Responding to Hostile Questions

Professional Polish Tip from Ro Crosbie

Ray contacted Tero because he responds to hostile questions, on a daily basis! Ouch!

This can be painful but does not have to be. When someone is hostile, they often are trying to make sense of something in their own mind, or have suffered from a miscommunication.

It does not help anyone to take a hostile question personally. Instead realize emotions are charged, and address those emotions. Stating "This seems like a concern for you, and it may be a concern for others as well" will dignify the concern and communicate you understand. Addressing emotions can de-escalate the situation while showing respect.

Above all, remember that responding with logic or facts before addressing emotions can make someone more hostile.

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