After a staff meeting, Sue whispered, "Can I speak to you?" We slipped into the next room, and she closed the door with a firmness that caught my attention.
"I have a problem with you I need to address. The ministry calendar came out yesterday, and you scheduled something on a night that I planned to do a training. I can't believe you'd do this without talking to me. You always do this! You never ask me …"
On she went, angry at being shut out of a decision she should have been a part of. I was dumbstruck. I hadn't known of the problem. Another person was responsible for the colliding dates, someone that Sue was mad at a lot. I didn't want to point fingers, and I didn't want to add to the tension in their relationship. I also felt she had every right to be frustrated, so I decided to absorb her anger, apologize, and promise to make the appropriate correction.
That was the first in a series of bad decisions in that conversation. I'll spare you the ugly details. But my attempt at an amiable ...1