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CONFLICT MANAGEMENT

“Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict.”
~ William Ellery Channing

If you have a run-in with a colleague at work, it’s likely to upset you more than a spat at home. Because relationships at work are more formal, people tend to let small irritations go unaddressed, and they often fester silently, causing tense and unproductive working conditions.

If these tensions are left unattended, they can build up until they damage what could be important working relationships. The cost of this type of unmanaged conflict is huge and it can sap organizational performance by 20 to 50 percent. Decreased productivity, relevant information not being shared, unpleasant emotional experiences, environmental stress and poor work relationships are just some of the symptoms that conflict, and the avoidance of conflict, can cause.

Because we spend more waking hours with coworkers than with friends and family, psychologists advise us to work out problems in the workplace as soon as we’re able. However, this is easier said than done as many people simply don’t have the skills to do so.

For a lot of us, the thought of walking into any type of conflict is usually the last action that we want to take. We tend to avoid conflict and view it as a negative experience and yet we are confronted by its presence frequently in the workplace. An important fact is that there is often extraordinary value lying latent in inter-personal and intra-organizational differences and when these are extracted effectively conflict is transformed from a major liability into a significant asset. Not only is the skill of handling conflict in a healthy way important for productivity in the workplace, it actually strengthens relationships. In our Conflict Management program you will learn how to:

  • Create an atmosphere of safety
  • Have clarity of intention and stay focused on outcomes
  • Observe vs. Evaluate
  • Express feelings and needs in an effective manner
  • Make effective requests and achieve mutual agreement
  • Increase personal influence
  • Respect and value dissenting opinions