If we avoid dealing with uncomfortable work situations, conflict resolution may prove more difficult.
Here are six conflict resolution tips to help you in resolving workplace conflict. Ideally, tackle conflict at work at an early stage to avoid it escalating.
Often, when there is a conflict at work, we believe that we are right and the other person is wrong. All our energy goes into proving that point. If we can change our mindset, accept that they are entitled to their views and listen to understand, we can reach a more positive outcome.
Put yourself in the other person's shoes. Reflect back the content of what they are saying, and the feelings they are expressing. They will feel listened to and are more likely to respond positively.
Conflict management in the workplace is not helped by raised voices and insults which can do lasting damage. Allow tempers to cool before discussing the issue at stake.
Don't confuse aggression with assertion. Assertive behaviour means expressing your needs and wants, at the same time allowing the other person to do the same.
Too often, we rush into solving problems. By taking the time to discuss the real needs of each party (and not just the wants) new solutions can often be found.
Enter any conflict with a desire for a positive outcome for both parties. If both sides feel they have gained in some way, rather than experiencing a win/lose situation, then lasting conflict resolution in the workplace is more likely to occur.
Return to Conflict in the Workplace Overview Page
Read our latest newsletter - 3 Pitfalls To Avoid When Making New Year Resolutions - And Why Cabbage Diets Don't Work or view our back issues for more concise tips on practical management skills.