In every life situation involving people, whether among family, friends or co-workers, there will be potential for conflict. A simple fact of the life is that we, all, at some point shall come into conflict in the workplace, principally, it is inevitable. It seems to reason then that learning to deal with conflict successfully should be our goal, especially those of us who desire to lead people and organisations .
Here are some thoughts for more effective handling of conflict in your life:
- Understand the battle. What is the real source of the conflict? Make sure you are addressing with the real issue. Be self-aware and appreciate we are all different.
- Find the right time and place to confront the conflict. When emotions are high is not a good time to deal with conflict. Personal conflict should not be handled in public.
- Examine yourself first. Sometimes the issue is personal to you and you are only blaming others for your problem or deflecting your own shortcomings.
- Consider the other side of the conflict. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes and consider their viewpoint in the conflict. You are not always right!
- Do not overreact to the issue or overload on emotion. Stick to the issue at hand. Always separate the problem from the personality.
- Do not dance around or sugarcoat the issue or disguise it in false kindness. Sometimes we fail to address the conflict because we are afraid of how the other person may respond or we are afraid of hurting feelings. This type of avoidance usually will cause more conflict eventually.
- Do not allow a small disagreement to become big disagreements without confronting them along the way. Minor conflict is always easier to handle than major conflict.
- Be firm but gentle. Learn the balance between the two.
- Work towards a solution. Never waste conflict, but use it to make the organisation and relationships better. The best-case scenario is a win-win situation, but ultimately the conflict needs to be resolved with the right solution.