This week’s theme is “be tactful”. Being tactful is being conscientious of other people and how they are going to take or respond to something.
As I have written about many times, I coach, and this summer I’m coaching travel baseball. This last weekend things did not go well for us. We were hanging in games until that one inning where the little mistakes, like missing a routine ground ball, begin a spiral effect. When this happens, the kids are down on themselves, and I can respond in a few different ways. I can yell and scream, but literature tells us that will have the opposite effect and more mistakes will happen. Instead, I handle it with tact. I pull a kid off to the side and relay the constructive criticism in a way that will not further deplete the spirits of the player. Always being sure to end with something positive.
Being tactful to me is synonymous with handling situations professionally. It’s not about holding back information, even if the information isn’t positive, it’s about relaying the information in a way that the other person will be receptive to and with eye towards understanding how they may feel upon receipt of the information.
This week, let’s do our best to be tactful and think about what we are trying to relay and how that will best be received. Open communication is a necessity, but we can do it in a way that’s both positive and effective.