Managing Conflict Resolution to Produce Positive Results
Conflict in work or in life is inevitable. At its essence conflict is any situation where you have differing goals, ideas, principles or feelings. Conflict also arises when one person acts in a way that another feel is rude, insensitive or thoughtless. Many conflicts can be very productive, if handled well. Differing points of view can lead to creative solutions to problems. When conflict is handled poorly, it creates long range negative results for the team and the organization.
In an interview with ConvenionPlanit.com Advisory Council member Mary E. Power, Principal, M-Powering Leaders, to learn how Conflict Resolution can help you.
1. I understand you are expanding your coaching practice and just got certified on an instrument to evaluate people’s conflict management behaviors. Why did you decide to take this route?
Our world has been thrust into work and life changes never previously experienced before on a global scale. Anxiety, general unrest and discontent abound. While professionals strive to “work through” these challenges their feelings spill out in heightened and more negative reactions which often leads to increased workplace conflict. When you add the limited opportunity for face to face discussion or a walk down the hall to clarify a comment or situation, there is potential for greatly increased conflict and drama. If I can help people better manage their emotional reactions, and move quickly to constructive behaviors, I can help minimize the emotional upheaval and ensuing conflict. I think that will provide a great benefit to many organizations.
2. What is the ultimate goal…the walk-away?
My goal is to help leaders understand their behaviors, their blind spots and their triggers that may lead to negative conflict as well as learn new behaviors that can minimize that negative conflict and create a positive direction and open dialogue. Knowledge is the biggest modifier of how we react. If you are aware of your triggers and your default behaviors, in the calm of the moment, when there is no emotion involved, you can choose different behaviors that will drive different results when the strong emotions show up. Part of my work is helping people develop different, more positive conflict behaviors and be aware of their triggers. What is wonderful about working with behaviors versus base personality is that all behaviors can be learned and those behaviors that are not serving an individual can be “unlearned” and changed.
3. Can you give an example of behavior modification in the workplace to minimize conflict?
The number one way to minimize conflict is to focus on the facts or ideas where you may differ and not make it personal. When personalities are under fire, emotions rise and destructive conflict rages. Statistics show that if you can engage constructive behaviors in the beginning phase of a conflict such as trying to understand the other person’s perspective, you have an 80 percent chance of producing a positive exchange. Whether working with a client, peer or your team, that is very important.
4. Is conflict management part of Emotional Intelligence work?
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