Workplace conflict between individuals or certain parties a cause stress and tension for everyone around them. Resolving conflicts can be challenging, but it is essential it it done in the right way, to avoid it happening again in the future. Mediating conflict is a valuable tool, and can help everyone get back to business as usual, without unnecessary distractions or stresses on everyone at work.
When trying to resolve conflict there are a few things you should keep in mind, to ensure it gets resolved in the best possible way, and reduces the same thing happening again in the future. Here are some tips about how to resolve conflict, and how to do it right.
Pick the Right Environment
Shouting and arguing in front of other members of staff is not going to be beneficial or productive. This often escalates matters and put extra stress on others too. Talking behind closed doors about the issue is usually the best route to take. Having a mediator there to help guide the discussion is often beneficial, being impartial and not taking sides will get the best outcome. Each party should have a chance to speak and express their perspective on the issue or events, without being interrupted. It is essential that each party is listened to and gets a chance to speak.
Empathetic Not Sympathetic
This might seem contradictory but there is a difference. Having empathy for someone means you are relating, or even experiencing their feelings in some way. Sympathy on the other hand means pitying someone, and suggests removing yourself from how they feel. Sympathy can get in the way of solving conflict as it can validate negative feelings, and almost create a stasis in the process of trying to resolve an argument.
Getting the Story Straight
Perhaps there has been miscommunication about a matter, so it is important to get the story, or the facts in line. Ask concise questions and aim to clarify details or facts that might have been misunderstood. This can help to pinpoint why the conflict occurred and why people said, or took, the action that they did. This might even reveal why the conflict occurred, and might help to offer resolutions.
Come Up with a Solution Together
It is important that both parties have an input into how the conflict will be resolved. Perhaps there will be more communication, a different way of working and interacting in the future, or a perhaps a method of dealing with conflict if it happens again. If the problem does get out of hand you can seek professional help with an Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service. Foreseeing these events and making sure they don’t escalate, it soften the best way to avoid conflict happening again.
The ability to resolve conflict is an important and often essential skill on the workplace. It can help your employees feel as ease, and create a better work environment for the to be productive. Being an impartial mediator, or having someone with this skill set in your team, is key to your company.