Conflict Matters!

Managers face many situations where he has to sort out two opposing actions or ideas. Situation may be very tense as people with conflicting ideas become very much involved and passionate about their stand. 

 As a manager, a positive and constructive conflict between team members may be a good thing (such as some team members in favor of Microsoft based technology and others for Linux based), but how you handle it matters the most. Conflict can be between individuals, teams, groups or organizations.  How you approach the situation tells who you really are.  Does it make you uncomfortable when you face such situation and just pretend it does not exist? Do you just avoid completely being in any conflict and do not share your insights/thoughts?  

I think conflict pushes oneself to test own mental and physical boundaries.  Some people get agitated and quickly loose control over thought process when someone is in conflict and try to trump the other in any way; some may feel nervous and just shut up and opt to get out; while other may listen to opposing views with cool head and try to work out some solution.

When managing a general conflict situation, try following (there might be situations where professional help is needed) –

  1. Stay calm; listen to other views with open mind.  Both sides may be right from own perspective.
  2. Find the real reason of conflict, not the one that is perceived. Observe.
  3. Believe that positive solution will come out at the end.
  4. Acknowledge the concerns and fears.  Find out what are the choices.
  5. Think win-win solution.  Attack the issue not the people.
  6. Make it known what is expected out of situation resolution.  Stay on the issue.
  7. Select the best solution and implement it.

Any other suggestions?  Have a good day!


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4 Responses to Conflict Matters!

  1. Excellent list of methods for conflict resolution! Another great source is a book titled “Crucial Conversations” http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Conversations-Tools-Talking-Stakes/dp/0071401946/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1197440837&sr=8-1

    It focuses on developing you thought patterns to prepare you for situations where the outcome of your conversations is important.

  2. Excellent list of methods for conflict resolution! Another great source is a book titled “Crucial Conversations” (you can find it on Amazon). It focuses on developing you thought patterns to prepare you for situations where the outcome of your conversations is important.

  3. Tom says:

    Thanks! I am currently in some conflict with my team. Your suggestions are very helpful especially focus on having a positive outcome and attack the issue not people.

    Here are some other steps to conflict resoulution I obtained somewhere. I’m not sure who to give the credit to:

    1. Speak the truth in love

    2. Seek to understand the other’s point of view

    3. See common ground

    4. Make expectations clear

    5. Stay focused on the issue at hand

    6. Maintain direct communication – no third parties

    7. Listen and don’t respond defensively

    8. Make a commitment to what is in the organization’s best interest

    9. Always reflect to discover and apply what you learned

    I like you blog and will add it to my blog roll. I look forward to visiting frequently.

  4. sandrar says:

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

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