Get Back – Respond to a text, e-mail or phone call as quickly as possible. The speed of your response is a strong indicator of your level of respect and commitment to the other person. Even if you cannot fulfill the request immediately, it is important to acknowledge that you have received the communication and the timeframe that you can give a proper response. Then deliver a detailed and thoughtful response that will exceed expectations.
Give Back – Think about what you can do for the other person. Do more than is expected of you. What is within your control and beyond your control? What needs to stay, what needs to go and what needs to change? Spend quality time by yourself and in conversation with the other person then be prepared to make some difficult choices and decisions. Follow through on these choices and decisions and ask the other person to do the same.
Move Back – Recognize that conflict is a normal and healthy part of every relationship. Take a short break in order to get a reality check, appreciate both sides, explore options and develop a workable solution. Agree to disagree and offer concessions when required. Avoid getting lost and obsessed with the details and with who’s right and who’s wrong. Focus on the big picture and try to anticipate others’ reactions and responses.
Sit Back – Let the other person take the lead. At first, you may feel uncertain and uncomfortable especially if you a natural leader or feel insecure unless you are in the control or power position. See this a positive and powerful opportunity to learn about yourself and the other person. Be patient with yourself and with the other person. Great leaders happily lead from behind so they can support the leaders that follow them.
Look Back – Remember what it was like at the beginning of the relationship and what first brought you together. Was it ambition, passion, innovation, collaboration, recognition? What are the relationship’s core values, strengths and weaknesses? What have been its greatest moments? What successes have been achieved and what challenges have been overcome? Take all of your responses and use them to create a strategy to move forward.