5 Steps To Resolve Workplace Conflicts
Wherever there’s a crowd, there’s conflict. In a workplace, where a bunch of people with different ideologies is brought together to fulfill a common goal, conflict is basically inevitable. Workplace conflict can take multiple forms, either between two employees, between an employee and his boss or between two superiors. As difficult as it might seem, resolving these conflicts are possible.
1. Embrace the conflicts
Don’t ever turn a blind eye. Conflict will only go worse with time as tension builds up. Deal with the issues and resolve them as soon as possible before people start holding grudges, which will deteriorate their performance.
Whenever you witness a disagreement between two of your employees, make sure they work it out. When a conflict arises between the two groups, you need to step in and get them on the same page. If there’s a conflict between you and one of your employees, try to resolve it in a private conversation.
2. Set-up meetings
Set up meetings between the two parties to the situation through. If there’s no communication, the conflict will only build up.
During these meetings, each party should have adequate time to say and hear whatever need to be said and heard. Everyone has the right to share their opinion and that’s should be a common knowledge. Make sure that no individual is in a position to control the meeting or the conversation. Each person should be open to hear and provide suggestion to resolve the conflict.
The most important rule is to not assign any blame. The goal is to find a viable solution to the disagreement that’s in everyone’s best interest. Nobody will ever participate in these meetings if an individual is blamed for the conflict.
3. Listen to your employees
The main objective is to bring people together and hear their side. Hence, listening to them is the top priority.
You need to get the full story from each and every person and get the full picture before you start providing your insights. Also, make sure they know that you are getting their message and understanding their point of view. Repeat back what they just said from your stance. For instance “so you are upset aboutbecause”. Whenever needed, ask a question in between to understand the situation thoroughly.
Listening is always about understanding, not judging. Do not provide your opinion until you empathize with their point of view.
4. Seek a mutually acceptable decision
The conversation should be entirely focused on the disagreements. The resolution will be possible only when you have an understanding of each party’s point of view. Use your experience to provide insight into the situation.
Spotlight all the common points of each party, so they have to know that their ultimate goal is the same- the benefit of the company. In order to resolve the conflict, you need to generate empathy. Make sure each party understands the other’s point of view.
Your effort to seek agreement, show your willingness to find a solution that’s in everybody’s interest.
5. Provide your insights
Use your experience to guide them through these disagreements. Just remember, that you are there to help them resolve their conflicts.
You need to be the one in control of the discussion. Do not deviate from the topic, nor let anybody focus on anything else, other than the objective of the discussion. Use your experience to tell them about previous similar cases relevant to the meeting.
Employees are not always that communicative and keep their opinions to themselves to avoid conflicts. You need them to know, that conflict isn’t a bad thing and it ultimately leads to better and revised decisions. Implement Your Safe Hub in your organization. It is a special communication channel that protects such employees with the power of anonymity.