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  • Writer's pictureRavi Rajani

UNLOCK "THE FBI METHOD": How to comfortably have uncomfortable conversations

Imagine this...

It's 9:13am on a cold Monday morning and you're slowly sipping on a boiling hot coffee.

As you repeatedly look down at your watch...

You begin to feel increasingly irritated, disrespected and angry.


Because Jimmy is late for your team meeting...AGAIN!

You and your entire team have been patiently waiting for his arrival and he's nowhere to be seen.

All of a sudden...

You hear the elevator ding.

It's Jimmy.

49 painful seconds later, he strolls in like he's Denzel Washington in the movie Training Day.

As Kevin Hart would say, "It's about to go down!"

In today's release, we're going to uncover how to communicate with honesty and have uncomfortable conversations without being a jerk.

Let's get it!

Many years ago...

I accidentally stumbled upon a YouTube video that saw Simon Sinek drop some major truth bombs in a Q&A session after a keynote speech.

As he was gifting the audience with some world-class gems...

He mentioned 3 words I'll NEVER forget about communicating with honesty in business:

  1. Feelings

  2. Behaviour

  3. Impact

I like to call it "The FBI Method".

F - Say how you feel.

B - Identify the behaviour that's causing this feeling.

I - State the future impact if that behaviour persists.

It works in all areas of life and in my's pure gold from Sinek.

Let's inject his teachings into our hypothetical situation with Jimmy.

What NOT to do

Funny enough, Simon begins to go back and forth with a lady in the audience about the exact scenario in question.

He recommended leaders to steer clear of the following approach:

“You’re always late to need to come to meetings on time otherwise (insert negative outcome) will happen!”

It sucks, right?

Here's the problem with the above:

  1. It's aggressive

  2. It's emotionally charged

  3. It's pedestrian

If you want to approach it in a human and boundary-setting manner, there's a better way.

Enter "The FBI Method"

Simon later shows this person what "good looks like" through a live example (using his framework).

Tweaking the language slightly it looked a little something like this:

“...When you showed up late to this morning's meeting, it made me feel very disconnected from you… My concern is that if you continue to show up late to meetings, this disconnection will grow to the point where I’ll stop trusting you.”

In the context of our scenario with Jimmy:

F - You state the feeling of disconnection.

B - You identify the behaviour creating this feeling.

I - You suggest what could occur if this behaviour continues.

Impactful, right?

Tips for execution

Tip 1: NEVER do this in front of your entire team - The goal is to create a safe space for a vulnerable conversation in a 1 to 1 environment (AFTER the team meeting).

Tip 2: After you've said the above words, resist the urge to talk - You should focus on being deeply present and listening.

Tip 3: This is hard to implement, especially for serial people pleasers - Don't worry, as you "get the reps in", your nervous system will go from foe to friend.

Bonus tip: Remember, it's not just what you say, it's how you say it. Your tone, pace and delivery will make or break you.

As always, "leading with intention" is Batman and "applying context" is Robin.

In summary

Uncomfortable conversations are a catalyst for growth.

As Tim Ferris once said:

"A person's success in life is measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations they're willing to have"

Let that one marinade...

I'll see ya next week homie!

Much love,

Ravi Rajani

P.S. Enjoy the content? Share the below with your leader...

[TEAMS ONLY] Book me for a storytelling keynote or workshop: Whether it's in person or virtual, to an intimate audience or a room full of thousands, learn more about how your team can become influential storytellers at your next sales kickoff, offsite or company retreat.

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