Video:How to Resolve Office Conflictwith Meghan Lynn Allen
Conflict in the office is an uncomfortable situation, but coworkers should be able to diffuse the tension and resolve the conflict with a few simple guidelines.See Transcript
Transcript:How to Resolve Office ConflictHi! This is Meghan Lynn Allen for About.com, and today we're discussing how to resolve office conflict.
Calm Down Before Engaging in the ConflictConflict in the office can be difficult. No one enjoys it. Sometimes the first and very simple step is to take a step away. Take five minutes away from the conflict, or take five minutes to yourself to think about the situation. Oftentimes, you're reacting to how you feel, and not to that specific incident.
Office conflict also plays on your own stress level, so before you go to resolve the conflict, learn how some simple tricks can manage your stress in your everyday work environment. Grab a stress ball, or use some deep breathing exercises.
Objectively Debate to Resolve ConflictTry to depersonalize conflicts. Try to take it away from a me versus you scenario, and more of an us versus the problem. It's not only a more professional way of handling it, but it usually gets employees on the same page. Let your coworker know in a calm tone why you're unhappy, and what you might do to change it. Be open and ready to listen. And be ready to compromise - it's not only about the other person, it's about you. Be ready to discuss or debate. Many times, office conflicts fester because no one take the time to discuss the situation, or have a healthy debate about the best course of action. If you fear conflict, it only gets worse.
Once you have a good debate or discussion going, remember to keep it professional, although you can acknowledge emotion. Say something like, I can understand how you're feeling, or, I would like to, or I wish we could. We are human in the workplace. Although it's nice to stick to those facts, facts are often colored by emotion.
Address the Conflicts as They AriseHandle conflicts in a timely manner. You don't want to let too much time go by before you try to resolve this conflict. Conflicts will build, one on top of another, and before you know it, you'll have a bigger problem.If you are unable to resolve an office conflict one-on-one between yourself and a coworker, then it's time to approach the boss or a manager. And in the worst possible circumstance, you can ask your boss about conciliation, arbitration, or mediation.If conflict arises due to racial, ethnic or sexual issues, or if someone's behavior is extremely inappropriate, it may not be conflict. It may be harassment.
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