Tips for using conflict resolution in the workplace
No matter who you are, you have faced some kind of conflict in the workplace, whether it is a co-worker who drives you insane or a manager's who style you do not particularly care for. Facing these types of conflict is a normal part of life, but that doesn't mean we should ignore them. If you ignore even the little conflicts in the workplace employee morale can go down, which can ultimately affect production and performance.
Here are some tips that you can follow for using conflict resolution in the workplace.
Always make sure that you stay calm, no matter what is going on. If you are the other, party involved in a conflict or if you are the neutral third party, it is critical for you to stay calm when dealing with the conflict. Staying calm can help keep your anger or irritation under control, which can help to keep the other person from going on the defense.
When practicing conflict resolution you want to make sure you choose a good time and place for conflict resolution. The place that you choose needs to be free from distractions and interruptions, no meetings or heavy foot traffic should be in the location that you choose. You want a quiet place that is free from interruptions so that the parties involved in conflict resolution do not feel rushed or at a disadvantage because they have to go somewhere at a set time.
Make sure that the parties who are involved in conflict resolution focus on the problem, rather than on each other. Placing blame on the other person, calling each other names, or even belittling the other person is not going to help solve the conflict it will make it worse. If the parties involved focus on the underlying problem, they can come up with a responsible solution to the problem. To help solve the underlying problem each party is going to have to accept responsibility for their actions that helped lead to the conflict.
Both parties need to really listen to what the other person has to say, even if they don't want to hear it. It is hard to listen to people when you are upset with them, but if you do not listen, you are not going to get any closer to resolving the conflict. To truly listen to another person you have to listen with your ears, body and mind, while they are talking do not think ahead of time about what you are going to say in response to what they are saying. If you are thinking about your response, you will not truly hear them. The best way to help others listen to each other is to allow each person to talk for 10 to 20 minutes without any interruptions.
Once you have heard, what is going on you can start coming up with possible resolutions to the conflict. No matter how silly the idea might be put it out on the table for both parties to evaluate because you just never know what is going to work. Once you have put all of the ideas out there, talk about the pros and cons of each idea to see what resolution is going to work the best, work together to tackle the problem, rather than continuing the conflict.
Once you have agreed upon a resolution you need to commit to it, if you are not committed to making it work, chances are it will not work. Keep in mind that the problem is not going to be solved overnight; it is going to take hard work and dedication for the resolution to start showing progress. You should also expect some setbacks because that is a normal part of the resolution process.