Closing a conversation graciously

Closing a conversation graciously is just as important as opening it well.

This is your last opportunity to make sure everything has been covered and the person you are speaking with has no further questions or issues that need to be addressed.

It’s best to leave the other person in an emotional space that is as positive as possible, as it would be counter-productive for them to walk away from the conversation feeling as if they have not been fully heard and validated.

If either of you leave the communication feeling negative, unimportant or undervalued, it’s likely neither will not keep their end of the bargain.

Thank the other person for taking the time to speak with you and ask them if they have any questions about the discussion, or if there’s anything else you can help them with.

At the end of the communication, perhaps you have reached an impasse and things are a bit uncomfortable for you both. Maybe the other person hasn’t got their own way or they are not happy with the solution you have set forward.

For example, you may have reached a decision that Mary really needs to get over her personal objections to the price of the Oompaloompa range, and to just get on with the job of selling them. You have made it clear what you expect and Mary understands that selling this product is art of her role, and that she has a sales target to reach.

In order to prevent Mary from continuing to complain about the price of the product range as her excuse for not meeting sales targets, you could bring the conversation to a close like this:

Mary, knowing that you still have to sell the Oompaloompa range to meet your sales targets and pass your performance review, is there anything else I can cover today for you that will help you to be successful?

This lets Mary know that although a firm line has been drawn with regards to her performance in a specific area, you are still there for her and willing to help with any other issues she may have.

Make sure you close the conversation by acknowledging the person’s contributions and thanking them for their time.

Mary, thank you so much for spending some time with me this afternoon. I appreciate your honesty and have learned a lot from our chat this afternoon.

Rapport is still important right up until the very end of a communication. If the person leaves feeling negative rapport, it will make the next conversation you have with them that much harder.

So over the last few weeks we have shared our communication model that con

Case study

tains four logical steps with each step occurring in order for the communication to run smoothly:

Step 1: Rapport

Step 2: Discovery

Step 3: Solution

Step 4: Close

This model encompasses a philosophy for communication, combined with tools and techniques, that when followed, provides a solid framework for communication and offers a consistent path to follow that will produce an outstanding quality of communication.

 

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