Conflict Management: Resolving Conflict in a Workplace
No two persons are identical with each other. Even twins have their own set of abilities, behaviour, and way of thinking that makes each of them unique. Having said that, understand that each person in your organisation also has their own ideas, cultures, and beliefs. This is where conflict can aris and you, as a leader, have to come in the picture to settle it.
Handling conflict is never easy, but it should never be feared. Conflict within the organisation is inevitable, but it can also deal a lot of damage if not dealt with accordingly and immediately. As a leader, this is one of the competencies in Emotional Intelligence that you should have. But, like any other skill, it can be learned.
Resolving conflict can be made easier with a little self-awareness. Here are some of the behaviours that a leader, such as yourself, shouldn’t have in order to effectively develop Conflict Management skills:
- Being uncomfortable with and tend to avoid conflict.
- Lacking consideration and tact when voicing disagreement; often present your arguments in a way that creates hostility.
- Having a hard time listening to others’ points of view when disagreement arises.
- Having difficulty in finding common ground with others and tend to focus solely and robustly on your own point of view.
- Seeing others as “opponents” and trying to find solutions that serve only yourself.
- Failing to see what part you may play in creating a problem; blaming the problem and the conflict on others.
Indeed, self-awareness is one of the key factors in resolving conflicts as it may help you focus on the issue more and not cloud your judgment. Instead of focusing on the people causing problems, you should shift your awareness to your surroundings as it can ultimately help you in detecting tension early amongst your employees or people, putting out the fire before the damage becomes bigger and harder or even nearly impossible to extinguish.
Once conflict is already set in motion, find out who the affected people are, analyse their situation, and think of an activity or strategy that you can use that can enable them to effectively express themselves without arguing. You can set a meeting between the two affected parties and set it in a neutral place. Make them state their concerns without interruption so that the other party can fully digest it. After that, you can ask each of them to help you brainstorm solutions in order to resolve their issue. Make sure that they have their fair share of contribution to the solution so that they’ll feel happy and be more willing to resolve it.
Conflicts are damaging, but if managed effectively, they can also help your people become more self-aware, more understanding to the feelings of others, and more focused on looking at the issues first and not on the person raising the issue. Become a great mediator and you’ll have a harmonious environment for your people.
At People Builders we have a team of expert trainers and coaches who can help you and your team develop Conflict Management Skills. Contact us today for a quick chat to see how we can partner with you to train and coach you and your team.