Conflict is something that most people don’t like but is somewhat unavoidable. It can be triggered by a range of things such as miscommunication jealousy, gossip, envy and several others known to those of us who’ve experienced it before. It can be even more challenging when it’s in the workplace and you’re left playing the role of referee. However, conflict resolution is a skill that can be developed just like any other with practice, emotional maturity and objectivity. It is also an essential skillset that you need as a leader and to run a sustainable business. This article will outline a few ways for you to deal with conflict in the workplace.
Most conflict is caused by poor communication so what if you could work on communicating better? Work on getting communicating clearly, concisely, accurately and timely in order to resolve the conflict at hand. Find out where the communication gaps occurred and how to prevent them from happening next time. If need be, put systems in place that enable effective communication if current systems aren’t seamless enough.
- Don’t take sides
When resolving conflict the worst thing you can do is become emotionally invested by taking sides! Be objective no matter what and listen to both sides. Think about reaching a resolution that benefits the business as a whole and not a particular individual. Your job is to keep employees focused on the bigger goal at hand, so don’t get carried away and make decisions based on wavering and raging emotions in the moment.
- Tackle it head on
Conflict is inevitable and is also a somewhat healthy part of the growth and development of employees and leaders within an organization. Conflict should never be avoided, instead it should be tackled head on. When opportunities to prevent conflict arise, grab them. Find the root of the issue and resolve it before it spirals out of control. By the end of it you will have individuals who have both learned and grown. Where you can, identify and eliminate natural tensions between colleagues in order to keep the peace and focus on the goals ahead.
Conflict doesn’t need to be a word that we should tip-toe around neither is it something to be avoided. Part of the package of running a business and leadership is the ability to manage people and their sometimes inability to deal with emotions that arise when working with people with different and conflicting personality types. Your job however is to be the glue that holds everything together and keeps everyone focused on the prize ahead.