6 Conflict Resolution Strategies for a (Truly) Peaceful Workplace
Your company culture is the envy of your industry. Teams work seamlessly and have a relentless focus on goals, not egos. Yet, even in the best possible environment, disagreements occur. From passive-aggressive coldness to outright arguments, these conflict resolution strategies help you get to the root of the problem and get everyone back to work.
Begin by Listening. Sometimes the only strategy you need is listening. For many of your employees, the feeling that they have not been heard and understood may be at the heart of their frustration. Listening actively to both sides, while asking follow-up questions, can help you get to the core of the problem and resolve the conflict quickly.
Don’t Wait. If you are a manager, you may want to wave away conflict, because you have a lot on your to-do list and hope it will simply die out. That might be the case in some situations, but if you sense that you will need to get involved to resolve the problem, do it right away instead of waiting for a better time. The better time is now.
Get the Group Together. Whether the conflict involves two people or an entire, extended team, bring everyone together for a healthy conversation. You may need to establish some ground rules for the clearing of the air so that your conflict resolution strategies aren’t derailed by personal attacks or tempers flaring out of control.
Validate Feelings. This is back to the listening step and how you respond to what is shared by employees. Even if you don’t agree with the point your employee is making, it’s important to let them know that what they are sharing about a particular situation is being received and considered valuable to the conversation.
Bring in an Expert. There are some situations for which you may not have adequate training to handle. Whether it involves a legal question or it’s a set high-stakes circumstance that could have important implications for the company or the employees involved, sometimes you need a qualified neutral party with conflict resolution experience.
Create a Plan. It’s easy for employees to walk away from a group discussion and have completely different ideas about what was decided in the meeting. Before everyone leaves the room, create a written document of what was agreed upon and have everyone sign it.
Managing even the best teams can come with a few tricky moments. With conflict resolution strategies and a clear understanding of the ways your employees handle stress and difficult situations, you can quickly get back to work. Contact us at PI Consulting Group for tools like the Predictive Index, which helps you understand what motivates your employees and equip them to do their best work.