How to Resolve Workplace Conflicts

How to Resolve Workplace Conflicts
    Rizwana Parvin
    Certified Corporate Trainer

    In order to resolve workplace conflicts, first we need to understand why there are conflicts in the workplace.

    Conflicts can arise due to differences in cultural background, personalities, goals, teams, and hierarchies and importance given to the roles and just different execution methods. Sometimes conflicts can happen when they disrespect or not trust each other. Ego or jealousy may be playing between them as well which can lead to unnecessary conflicts. Conflicts can also arise sometimes without any reason just because they dislike each other as well.

    Conflicts can be personal or it may arise between peers, across teams or between manager and reportee also between the organization and its employees and between customers and employees dealing with customers or the organization and the customers due to the organization’s policies and so on.

    Workplace Conflicts
    For instance, if a manager and his subordinate dislike each other. The manager may dislike the subordinate because of his attitude. The subordinate dislikes his manager because of his authoritative style. Both the manager and his reportee have a pre-judgmental mindset about each other which may not be true always.

    In this case, no matter how hardworking the employee is and shows significant results, the boss always has a cynic attitude about his subordinate. The
    subordinate also due to his negative mindset about his boss starts complaining about his boss to his team members and other office colleagues.

    Both the manager and the reportee spend a lot of energy finding each other’s fault instead of focusing on current task at hand which here is “to close the deal with a crucial client” who can bring constant long-term revenue to the company.

    Here, The manager may be giving insightful directions from experience about how to execute the task but the reportee may do it as he wishes. The reportee may come up with creative ideas to close the deal but the manager may disapprove of it.

    Both of them lack cooperation and fail to work as a team. Though the focus here has to be “to convince the client”, both are focusing on disagreeing with each other and constantly trying to prove that “they are right.”

    How this conflict could be resolved is both can start accepting that “Everyone is unique in their own way and can add significant value to the organization.” By opposing their own past belief system, they become open to accept, respect and trust each other.

    If they still dislike each other and they have to work together, then they have to set up healthy boundaries and maintain professional relationship and make a point not to talk on each other’s back as that is only going to shift their focus to insignificant things like gossiping and manipulating instead of actually focusing on the work at hand. Both have to be consciously aware of the common objective i.e. “to work together as team.”

    Resolving Workplace conflicts can open room for building stronger teams.
    Criticism can be fatal

    Nobody likes to be criticized. Constant criticism can affect relationships and work. Appreciation is the key. Appreciating each other can cool down the heated atmosphere. Constant appreciation can improve quality of work as well as relationships. Here, the manager can say “I appreciate you working late hours that shows your commitment towards work” and the subordinate can say “Every day is a new learning experience for me and I learn a lot from you.” Both feel valued and appreciated hence it lessens the frictions and creates a positive work environment.

    Importance of Corporate Trainer during Workplace Conflicts

    A corporate trainer can teach the various working strategies of conflict resolution like accommodating, avoiding, compromising, mediating and so on in a professional way. So the trainees can understand it from an objective perspective about how to handle different conflicts.

    Through different activities conducted by the corporate trainer, the trainees get hands on experience about handling the conflicts, thus they learn to approach the conflicts appropriately and strategically. The activities also make room for kinesthetic learning environment and thereby it makes a lasting memory for the trainees and hence they resolve appropriate behaviours faster and resolve conflicts efficiently.

    The trainer can conduct sessions with members working on different teams and groups. Thereby addressing inter- team conflicts. This will enhance smoother workflow across organization and increases productivity and profits.

    Workplace conflicts is one of the pressing problems in organizations today. Knowing the right strategies to effectively communicate the conflict with those involved is a skill which a trainer can train you in so you understand the conflicts from each other’s shoes, which opens room for creativity, brain storming and innovation in the organization.

    Resolving Workplace conflicts can open room for building stronger teams, create healthy relationships between colleagues, add value to the organization, improve mindset of individuals, enhance organizational work atmosphere and keeps you more focused on the work at hand, ultimately leading to organizational growth and development.

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