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Many people think of assertiveness as a form brash confidence that is used liberally to win arguments and get results that are beneficial to the individual but not the group.

However, assertiveness is a very necessary trait to ensure that everyone in a group gets the results they need. Assertiveness is a way of thinking, behaving and reacting to others that allow you to stand up for your rights while also respecting the rights of those around you.

The needs and feelings of others are quite often different to our own, and how we communicate our own wants and needs with consideration to the needs and feelings of others is the internal balancing act that takes place when we are being assertive.

Assertiveness is generally required when instigating the difficult conversations that are necessary for dealing with passive or aggressively negative behaviours at work.

To help you get through these hard and awkward conversations here are Trainwest’s top 5 tips to becoming more assertive.

Start small.
You wouldn’t run a marathon without training your body over time, taking small steps and setting more increasingly difficult personal goals to increase your physical endurance over time. Being assertive also takes this kind of training. To begin, try being assertive in mildly tense situations, such as asking to be seated elsewhere in a restaurant.

Learn to say no.
Passive types worry that saying no is selfish. It isn’t. Setting healthy limits is an important part of healthy relationships. Good fences make good neighbours.

Let go of guilt.
Being assertive can be tough, especially for a people-pleaser. It can feel unnerving, and you may feel like you are treading on people’s toes. If you feel uncomfortable, try picturing yourself as someone else, for example someone that you deeply care about such as a family member. People-pleasers tend to find it a lot easier to speak up for others than for themselves.

Express your needs and feelings.
Assuming that someone else is aware of your needs and feelings is the wrong course of action to become assertive. Inform others about what you are thinking and how you are feeling. Be clear, be honest and be thorough. Approach this as you would approach ordering a coffee. If you don’t disclose exactly what you want – sugar, milk, cream etc., you aren’t going to get back what you need.

Check out a course at Trainwest.
Our Certificate IV in Frontline Management will provide you with guidance and insight into the ways in which you respond to different people, situations and events. The qualification is nationally recognised and will provide you with the essential skills of supervision, team building, delegation and conflict resolution. Trainwest’s perth training course gives you the tools you need to effectively manage your responses and express your views and plans.

Our next Frontline Management course starts on the 28th of February, contact Trainwest today to secure your place and get on track to a better career.