Conflicts at workplace are unavoidable. No matter what industry you are in, how large your company is and what kind of coworkers, managers or employees you have, there will be conflicts at work. Every professional should learn how to defuse conflicts at work. It is a bit of art and a bit of logic. At the end of the day, it is common sense but it is quite uncommon among common people. When push comes to shove, most people choose to suspend their common sense and indulge in rather irrational and at times immature acts.
Let us delve into conflicts at work, explore the possible causes and complications to understand the efficacy of certain ways that can resolve the problem.
Conflicts arise from discrepancies or disagreements. You may want something specific while your coworker, senior or junior may want something else. This can be a bone of contention. Personal preferences, abilities, objectives, visions, failures and successes are also common causes of conflicts. Actions and reactions facilitate conflicts. There may not be any ego issues, conflict of interest or any harm inflicted by anyone but certain actions may generate certain reactions which may create conflicts. The first step of how to defuse conflicts at work is acknowledgement.
People in conflict and others around must acknowledge that there exists a conflict which must be confronted. Confrontation doesn’t imply an argument or a heated showdown. It is simple acknowledgement and then facing the reality. A simple discussion, open minded and flexible exchange of opinions, realities or even perceptions would be sufficient to break the ice. Conflicts can become severe when emotions get bottled up and they are left unaddressed for a long time.
Once acknowledged and confronted, conflicts at work can be easily dealt by two individuals or more and possibly under the supervision of a mediator. Having third party intervention is not always desirable in personal lives but that works in professions, especially if the intervener or mediator is a senior who both parties respect and listen to.
Often, conflicts can be defused just by talking things out. At times, one party is wrong and that can be easily addressed. If both parties are wrong, then it doesn’t take anything to resolve the issue other than accepting the mistakes or faults. Both need to mend their standpoints. Should one party be unwilling to accept the fault or if both parties are unwilling to relent, then both can be counseled to put aside their conflicts to ensure the larger interest of the company. Not always do two people like one another but they can always work together for their mutual benefit.