12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 26 May 2010
I gave this book five stars as it meets several important needs I have for a great self development book. First of all I found the wisdom contained in the book highly accessible, rather than page after page of text, the use of case studies, icon sound bites, diagrams and a logical flow made the book user friendly. Secondly its robust dealing with all aspects of difficult conversations including key areas like managing your emotions, planning the conversations, key skills and most importantly how to develop the right mindset. Finally, I could apply the learning directly to the conversations i wanted to tackle as the book coaches the reader on the various key aspects of preparing for the conversation you need to have. Overall a book that really delivers real insights and robust strategies that have integrity rather than manipulative techniques which are so common in other books of this genre.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 25 February 2010
This book is easy to read and entertaining. It also gets to the heart of the blocks for all of us; saying things and expressing our needs in a way that we feel confident to do whilst being understanding of others. Vital Conversations guides you step by step through the best ways to do this. It is clear and concise and i have used the techniques with my clients as well as in my personal life with great success. I really believe we should learn these skills at school. I give it 5 stars because the content is easy to understand and apply and the outcomes are transforming.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 19 November 2011
This book is a very easy read and contains clear accounts of both the process of conflict and ways of resolving it. As a social work practitioner I used this book with a family who had raised numerous complaints about their sons care. Purchasing five copies the care team and the family read the book and used the key concepts to recognise and defuse conflicts before they became disabling. The outcome was a win win for the care team and the family - mutual understanding was increased, differences were recognised at an early stage, and more relaxed and trusting relationships emerged as we gathered round problems rather than taking positions at the earliest stage. It was particularly rewarding to hear concepts in the book being referred to and discussed when conflicts began to surface. The cessation of complaints was the most tangible effect of this very practical and friendly guide leaving practitioners able to focus on giving care.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 28 May 2010
Terrific read- I thoroughly enjoyed reading Alec's debut book, Vital Conversations. As a client, I have had the privilege to know and work with Alec for several years. During this time he has introduced many of the elements of the book into 1-2-1 coaching sessions as well as into larger group training events. To now have the opportunity to see it all written down in one convenient place is of immense value. I certainly intend to refer to it on an ongoing basis both in a leadership context in my business and professional career and in a broader context for those other tough conversations that life throws at us from time to time. Thoroughly recommended- and, if you want to get to know Alec better yourself after reading his book, I also have absolutely no hesitation whatsoever in recommending to you his public and corporate workshops.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 16 April 2010
This book is great for personal or professional use because it's an excellent mix of tools, ideas, inspiration and practical tips. You can either dip in and out of it depending on what you're interested in or you can read it cover to cover. I read it through in one go and never found myself skipping pages or questioning the relevance. I completely recommend this book to help you understand yourself and other people to improve how you work & live together. Enjoy!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 15 April 2010
This is one of those rare publications. Packed full of reader friendly, inspirational techniques that really work! Whether your vital conversation is with employee, employer, friend, foe or worse, the book provides the type of guidance that quite simply isn't available elsewhere. I wish I had discovered these techniques and ways of thinking, years ago.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 12 April 2010
We all find ourselves in 'tight' spots when it comes to needing to have a really important conversation. Whether its with a colleague at work who is negatively affecting our opportunity to perform, a friend and a personal relationship or a loved one who is acting in a way that is just plain upsetting! This book is a practical help for anyone in need of its advice, or simply an easy read with lots of useful learning for the future. Probably more directly aimed for support in a business or commercial environment the fast paced narrative is easy to read and retain; I particularly liked the 'real' examples that brought the context alive. I found myself keen to actually 'try out' what I had learned, and practise always makes perfect, the techniques that are recommended really do work!!
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 27 May 2010
I design and deliver leadership development programmes and I often cover the subject of difficult conversations with participants: the problems in building up the courage to have them and the consequences of not having them. This book is the best book available by far on the subject matter and so I have already been recommending it. It is easy to read, practical, but it isn't simplistic like some other books out there. It tackles the difficulties head on and offers some really straightforward advice. I think as well, what makes it especially helpful is it offers so much encouragement and confidence that these conversations can be engaged in in a way that makes you wonder why on earth you didn't have them earlier. Very recommended read.
on 22 November 2013
A great book on hot to approach critical conversations in our life, and frankly we are handling a number of important conversations every month. It changes your mindset and leads to less stress at work & home.
on 19 February 2014
A very useful book for those who wish to improve their communication skills and particularly in difficult situations. It is written in a way that makes it inviting to read and interesting to absorb.