How to Be Direct In The Workplace

January 9, 2023

3 min read

Effective communication is crucial in any professional setting. It helps us build strong relationships with our colleagues, convey our thoughts and ideas clearly, and resolve conflicts efficiently. However, many of us struggle with being direct, especially when it comes to sensitive topics or difficult conversations.

Being direct in the workplace can lead to clearer communication and more efficient decision making. By clearly and concisely expressing your thoughts, opinions, and expectations, you can help to reduce misunderstandings and confusion. This can streamline discussions and allow for more focused and productive meetings.

Additionally, being honest and upfront with your colleagues can help to build trust and respect. Being straightforward and open can lead to better outcomes in the workplace!

Tips For Being More Direct In The Workplace

Practice active listening

Make an effort to fully understand what others are saying before responding. This can help to ensure that you are accurately conveying your thoughts and avoiding misunderstandings. Here’s Varun Puri on actively listening on Yoodli:

Active listening on Yoodli

Avoid weak words

Use strong, affirmative language to clearly state your opinions and expectations. Avoid words and phrases such as “kinda”, “sorta”, etc. which can weaken the impact of your message.

Weak words on Yoodli

Be specific and concrete

Be clear and specific in your communication, using concrete examples and details to support your points. This can help to reduce confusion and ensure that your message is understood.

How To Overcome The Challenges Of Being Direct In The Workplace

There are several challenges that can make it difficult to be direct in the workplace:

Fear of conflict or causing offense: You may be hesitant to be direct because you are concerned about causing conflict or offending others.

Difficulty expressing yourself clearly: You may struggle to clearly articulate your thoughts and opinions, which can make it hard to be direct.

Dealing with indirect communication from others: You may encounter colleagues who are indirect in their communication, which can make it difficult to understand their intentions or expectations.

To overcome these challenges try incorporating the following suggestions:

Use inclusive language: When communicating with others, use language that is inclusive and respectful. This can help to reduce the risk of causing offense or conflict and builds rapport with others.

Avoid filler words: Using filler words like “um,” “ah,” and “like” can make you seem uncertain or unprepared. Try to minimize this to show confidence and clarity with your message.

You can practice speaking without filler words by heading over to the Yoodli Game Section and playing the speaking games there. Here’s an example of Varun playing the Yoodli games:

Yoodli Daily Drill: Filler Words

Smile: A smile can help to convey warmth and friendliness, which can make it easier for others to receive your message.

Use a relaxed pace: Speaking too quickly or too slowly can make it hard for others to understand you. Try to find a comfortable, natural pace that allows you to clearly convey your thoughts. Speaking at a pace of 125 to 175 words per minute is a good range to sound relaxed. You can practice speaking at this pace by recording yourself on Yoodli’s platform.

How To Handle Difficult Conversations And Confrontations In A Direct Way

Handling difficult conversations and confrontations in a direct way can be challenging, but it is an important skill to develop in the workplace. Here are some tips for doing so:

Prepare ahead of time: Think about what you want to say and how you want to say it. This can help you to feel more confident and clear in your communication.

Stay calm and respectful: It can be easy to get emotional during difficult conversations, but it is important to try to remain calm and respectful. This can help to keep the conversation focused on the issue at hand and prevent it from escalating into a confrontation.

Focus on the issue at hand, not the person: When addressing a difficult issue, try to stay focused on the specific concern or problem that needs to be addressed. Avoid personal attacks or accusations, which can only make the situation worse.

Practice Your Direct Communication Using Yoodli’s Feedback Tool So You Can Use Quality Word Choice And Delivery

Being direct in the workplace is an important skill that can help you to clearly and effectively communicate your thoughts and expectations. It can lead to more efficient decision-making and better outcomes in your professional life.

If you want to improve your word choice and delivery, sign up for Yoodli, a free AI speech coach that provides instant feedback on your word choice and delivery to help you become a direct, confident and clear speaker.


Start practicing with Yoodli.

Getting better at speaking is getting easier. Record or upload a speech and let our AI Speech Coach analyze your speaking and give you feedback.

Get Yoodli for free