Talk to the right person to find the right solution

​Of the many emails I get from subscribers, the most common type seems to be people who are having a problem with another person. They don’t seem to be able to solve the issue so they contact me to ask for my help. There are two different types of email these people send me but they both highlight the same problem – they shouldn’t be talking to me; they need to talk to the right person.

​Assertiveness Tactics Report

Communication is an essentail skill in problem solving. You need to be able to assert yourself without upsetting others. You can learn to do so with my FREE Assertiveness Tactics Report.


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Sometimes, their email will be short and to the point, e.g.

Of the many emails I get from subscribers, the most common type seems to be people who are having a problem with another person. They don’t seem to be able to solve the issue so they contact me to ask for my help. There are two different types of email these people send me but they both highlight the same problem – they shouldn’t be talking to me; they need to talk to the right person.
Sometimes, their email will be short and to the point, e.g.

​‘John is behaving in a way that I don’t like; how can I make him change.’

‘John is behaving in a way that I don’t like; how can I make him change.’

​This type of communication is based around the idea that the other person is responsible for the whole problem (whatever it may be) and the person writing wants to make them change.


The other type of email I receive involves the writer producing something approaching a college dissertation on why the other person is such a big problem in their life. If I was to read the entire email (I no longer do) I would notice that the other person is to blame for everything and; they have made no real attempt to deal with the situation. A real attempt to resolve the issue happens when you talk to the right person rather than a friend or; some stranger. A real attempt to resolve the issue happens when you take responsibility and stop shifting all the blame on to the other person.


The advice contained in this article can apply to any kind of relationship, e.g.:

This type of communication is based around the idea that the other person is responsible for the whole problem (whatever it may be) and the person writing wants to make them change.
The other type of email I receive involves the writer producing something approaching a college dissertation on why the other person is such a big problem in their life. If I was to read the entire I email (I no longer do) I would notice that the other person is to blame for everything and; they have made no real attempt to deal with the situation. A real attempt to resolve the issue happens when you talk to the right person rather than a friend or; some stranger. A real attempt to resolve the issue happens when you take responsibility and stop shifting all the blame on to the other person.
The advice contained in this article can apply to any kind of relationship, e.g.:
  • ​Intimate relationship
  • ​Friendship
  • ​Work colleague
  • ​Manager / Subordinate
  • ​Customer / Supplier

​It doesn’t really matter what type of relationship it is; the first step to resolving a problem is to speak to the right person and; the right person is the person whom you have the problem with. If you skip this step, you are at best going to build hostility with that person because you will have gone complaining about them before you gave them an opportunity to resolve any issue. In other words, even if you eventually resolve the initial problem, it is unlikely to be an amicable resolution.


There are many reasons why you want to resolve these problems amicably. They include:

It doesn’t really matter what type of relationship it is; the first step to resolving a problem is to speak to the right person and; the right person is the person whom you have the problem with. If you skip this step, you are at best going to build hostility with that person because you will have gone complaining about them before you gave them an opportunity to resolve any issue. In other words, even if you eventually resolve the initial problem, it is unlikely to be an amicable resolution.
There are many reasons why you want to resolve these problems amicably. They include:
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    ​Better relationships
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    Less conflict
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    Reduced stress
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    ​Greater productivity
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    Increased happiness
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    ​Enhanced confidence

​The potential benefits of resolving the issue amicably are endless.

The potential benefits of resolving the issue amicably are endless.

​Why talk to the right person?

​There are many problems which arise when you don’t talk to right person to deal with the problem. The following are some of the most important to note.

There are many problems which arise when you don’t talk to right person to deal with the problem. The following are some of the most important to note.

​1. They can ‘t solve the problem

1. They can ‘t solve the problem
talk-to-the-right-person-solve-problem

​Just because something is driving you crazy; that does not mean that everybody else thinks the same thing. In many cases, they won’t even notice that there is a problem. They will carry on oblivious to the issue until you pluck up the courage to say something​.

To make matters worse, while they are continuing stress free, you are getting more frustrated and angry with each day that the problem persists. This is usually where you start telling other people about how this person is being a complete ​nightmare. But before you go telling others, you need to ask yourself the following question:

Is this the best person to solve the problem?’

Of course, they are not. The best person to help you solve the problem is the person whom you have the problem with. They are the right person so, talk to them. Most people do not want to cause problems for other people and; if they learn that they are causing problems for someone; as long as they are treated with respect, they will be happy to work together to solve the issue.

If you struggle to raise issues with others, check out my article on constructive feedback for some great advice.

​If you have a problem with someone; tell them, not everyone else.

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Just because something is driving you crazy; that does not mean that everybody else thinks the same thing. In many cases, they won’t even notice that there is a problem. They will carry on oblivious to the issue until you pluck up the courage to say something to raise the issue.

To make matters worse, while they are continuing stress free, you are getting more frustrated and angry with each day that the problem persists. This is usually where you start telling other people about how this person is being a complete atmosphere. But before you go telling others, you need to ask yourself the following question:

‘Is this the best person to solve the problem?’

Of course, they are not. The best person to help you solve the problem is the person whom you have the problem with. They are the right person so, talk to them. Most people do not want to cause problems for other people and; if they learn that they are causing problems for someone; as long as they are treated with respect, they will be happy to work together to solve the issue.

If you struggle to raise issues with others, check out my article on constructive feedback for some great advice.

​2. You are just complaining

talk-to-the-right-person-complain
2. You are just complaining

​To build on the last point, most people choose to tell anybody about the problem except the person they have the problem with. Deep down, we all know that to solve a problem, you must talk to the right person. Maybe you don’t want to be the bad guy but avoiding important discussions like this only ever causes harm.

When you fail to talk to the right person, you are not solving a problem, you are avoiding dealing with a problem. You are just complaining i.e. you are talking about the problem (to others) without any real desire to solve the problem.

If you think that you can avoid dealing with a problem until it goes away, you are sadly mistaken. This is rarely ever a successful approach to problem solving and on the rare occasion that it does succeed; you have just been incredibly lucky. To deal with a problem effectively, you need to talk to the right person before the problem escalates because if you do ignore it; the problem will grow and the consequences will be more severe.

You can learn more with my article about why avoidance is not a successful problem-solving strategy.

​Assertiveness Tactics Report

Communication is an essentail skill in problem solving. You need to be able to assert yourself without upsetting others. You can learn to do so with my FREE Assertiveness Tactics Report.


Get Your FREE Copy Here

To build on the last point, most people choose to tell anybody about the problem except the person they have the problem with. Deep down, we all know that to solve a problem, you must talk to the right person. Maybe you don’t want to be the bad guy but avoiding important discussions like this only ever cause harm.

When you fail to talk to the right person, you are not solving a problem, you are avoiding dealing with a problem. You are just complaining i.e. you are talking about the problem without any real desire to solve the problem.

If you think that you can avoid dealing with a problem until it goes away, you are sadly mistaken. This is rarely ever a successful approach to problem solving and on the rare occasion that it does succeed; you have just been incredibly lucky. To deal with a problem effectively, you need to talk to the right person before the problem escalates because if you do ignore it; the problem will grow and the consequences will be more severe.

You can learn more with my article about why avoidance is not a successful problem-solving strategy.

​3. Your story is your story

3. Your story is your story
talk-to-the-right-person-story

​In the emails I receive on this topic, it is always the other person’s problem. Even in the dissertation length emails, there is never any comment which suggests that the writer may be in any way responsible for the problems which have arisen.

When complaining to others about problems you are having with someone else it is easy to think that you are telling them the story. You are not. You are telling them your story. There always two sides to a story but even when you think you are being fair and impartial; you are not. You don’t have access to the other person’s thoughts, feelings and observations so there is no way that you can fairly represent them.

This is so important because unless you talk to the person whom you have the problem with; you can’t be sure that you fully understand the problem. When you do talk to the right person, you will often learn that the problem is a little different than what you thought it was. You will often learn that you are contributing to the problem in some way that you hadn’t realised or; you were wilfully ignoring.

This is a good thing though. When you accept that you are responsible for some of the problem, you can demonstrate that you are willing to make changes. This then influences the other person to change too. You move from a focus on blame to a focus on a win-win solution where you say:

‘We have a problem here. Let’s work together to fix it.’


You can ​access my article about seeking win-win solutions here.

In the emails I receive on this topic, it is always the other person’s problems. Even in the dissertation length emails, there is never any comment which suggests that the writer may be in any way responsible for the problems which have arisen.

When complaining to others about problems you are having with someone else it is easy to think that you are telling them the story. You are not. You are telling them your story. There always two sides to a story but even when you think you are being fair and impartial; you are not. You don’t have access to the other person’s thoughts, feelings and observations so there is no way that you can fairly represent them.
This is so important because unless you talk to the person whom you have the problem with; you can’t be sure that you fully understand the problem. When you do talk to the right person, you will often learn that the problem is a little different than what you thought it was. You will often learn that you are contributing to the problem in some way that you hadn’t realised or; you were wilfully ignoring.

This is a good thing though. When you accept that you are responsible for some of the problem, you can demonstrate that you are willing to make changes. This then influences the other person to change too. You move from a focus on blame to a focus on a win-win solution where you say:

‘We have a problem here. Let’s work together to fix it.’

You can learn access my article about seeking win-win solutions here.

​If you struggle to have difficult conversations, check out How to Talk So Others Will Listen.

​Conclusion

​Relationships are an essential part of life. They help us in every area of life from getting things done to building confidence, enjoying life and providing us with opportunities for intimacy. When we have good relationships, our lives are better. When we have problems with our relationships, every area of our life suffers. Of course, problems will arise but if we deal with them properly, they won’t do any lasting damage. In fact, dealing with problems successfully usually builds trust and respect, thus improving the relationship. The first step is to talk to the right person i.e. the person whom you have the problem with. If you talk to them with respect, you will usually find that they are open to the discussion. You can then work together to fully understand the problem and work together to find a win-win solution.

Relationships are an essential part of life. They help us in every area of life from getting things done to building confidence, enjoying life and providing us with opportunities for intimacy. When we have good relationships, our lives are better. When we have problems with our relationships, every area of our life suffers. Of course, problems will arise but if we deal with them properly, they won’t do any lasting damage. In fact, dealing with problems successfully usually builds trust and respect, thus improving relationship. The first step is to talk to the right person i.e. the person whom you have the problem with. If you talk to them with respect, you will usually find that they are open to the discussion. You can then work together to fully understand the problem and work together to find a win-win solution.