This past weekend I had the privilege of speaking with medical professionals at a conference in Toronto, Canada. One of the topics we talked about was handling workplace conflict.
We all know that when you are working with people you are bound to have conflict. It is just a fact of life. The point of the presentation was on handling the situation when it arises successfully to come out with a win-win result.
First when conflict does happen each person involved needs to be able to describe what it feels like to them. Are they frustrated, angry, depressed, or stressed? Being able to describe what you are feeling and then being able to relay that to whomever is involved is important. Many times we do not know how others actually feel so we do not know how to respond.
Next, is it very important to actually identify and describe what the conflict is. When I have asked employees to do this often they will come back and tell me that it really was just a problem they were having as once they started to write it out, they realized that it was pretty petty and they needed to make some adjustments themselves.
Things to consider are:
Facts – The actual true facts
Motives – Were there any true motives or was it just innocent?
Personalities – Most often this is the reason for any conflict
Genders – Sometimes they collide
Generations – Different generations working together can cause misunderstandings from not really understanding where each other are coming from.
It is important to address when coworkers have conflict so as to keep peace in the workplace. Often when doing the above research of the actual conflict, 90% of the time is it not that one person has truly done something to cause harm or anger purposefully. It is usually a personality conflict or a communication misunderstanding.
We need to realize that we are all different like the colors of the crayons in a box, different but complement each other when we blend together. We need to learn how to see the best in each other and put for effort to communicate clearly and have the desire to work well together each day.
Cooperation is the thorough conviction that nobody can get there unless everybody gets there. ~ Virginia Burden