- People begin to get animated.
- People interrupt others to offer their thoughts & opinions.
- People get defensive.
- Bring it back to an objective conversation. Say something like, “let me see if I understand the situation/what everyone is saying” and then objectively summarize what’s going on.
- Acknowledge the fact that people are getting upset. Say something like, “I can tell this is very important to you. Can you tell me what you’re concerned about?/Can you explain what you’re worried about?”
- Take a break but leave things on a positive note. Say something like, “A lot of great ideas are being shared. Why don’t we take a break/move on to the next topic. Why don’t we think about (a focused objective) for our next meeting?”
Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Elizabeth Pauker-Silva