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6 keys to manage conflicts in the company

6 keys to manage conflicts in the company

July 14, 2024

Companies are always environments based on coordinated work, which has good things and bad things. The good thing is that the coordination of teams and departments can create great things thanks to the generated synergies, and the bad thing is that the need for organization facilitates the appearance of conflicts between groups and people.

That is why it is crucial for the leaders of any organization to develop conflict management competencies. Faced with this kind of problem, the solution is never as simple as making sure everything works perfectly or taking decisive measures unilaterally.

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How to improve conflict management in organizations

Each organization is unique and has its own working environment, but that does not mean that there are no basic rules of conflict management that should always be taken into account. In the next lines we will see different Key ideas to manage conflicts in the company, and tips on how to apply them .

1. Do not rekindle old conflicts

Conflicts in the context of the company do not occur in the abstract, but emerge through human beings of flesh and blood with their own motivations and emotions. That is why we must prevent the possibility of taking advantage of present conflict to rekindle old grudges, something more frequent than it seems even in a professional environment .

Therefore, we must stop the changes of topic at the root and insist that everyone focus on the current problem, since its importance requires it.

2. Know how to mediate and adopt a position of neutrality

It is important to empathize and recognize the feelings experienced by the people involved, but it is important not to position oneself explicitly in favor of one of the parties, since the simple act of doing that can nullify our ability to mediate .

We must ensure that what we do when mediating is seen within the framework of common interest, which goes beyond individualities.

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3. Claim the value of intermediate solutions

Many times, the proposed solutions do not convince anyone because they do not become exactly what you wanted. However, we must know how to make the idea known to everyone that achieving an intermediate solution in which everyone gains a little and at the same time yields a little bit is valuable.

The reason is that this allows the unity of the team to be maintained without anyone owing anything to anyone, which in the long term has a positive effect on all .

4. Nobody wants to be "the loser"

There are times in which to resolve a conflict must give compensation to all involved, although for some it is symbolic. In this way the fear that this is seen by all as a sign of weakness is alleviated that can set a precedent so that in the future their needs and objectives are not taken into account.

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5. It is necessary to start from the values ​​of the company

If you do not want to convey an inconsistent image of what the organization is, it is crucial not to take actions that go against the values ​​of the organization .

If in a company cooperation is claimed and individualism is rejected, it does not make sense to solve something behind closed doors, talking only with a few representatives of the parties involved in the conflict, for example. Otherwise, uncertainty is fed and it is reported that the company is an unstable environment in which it is better not to place much hope.

6. It is necessary to take care of what is said and what is done

Another source of possible inconsistencies has to do with resolving conflicts only in words, without this being translated into concrete measures. Doing that supposes fall into the error of letting these problems be solved unofficially through informal channels, which damages the working environment.

How to gain experience in this field?

As always happens in everything related to the skills applied to the company, conflict management must be perfected mainly in the day-to-day work in the organizational context. Fortunately, there are also training programs specifically aimed at training in this kind of intervention actions in groups.

A good example of this is the Specialization Course in Conflict Management in Organizations, of the Institut de Formació Contínua IL3 (Universitat de Barcelona), an excellent initiative that has 3 ECTS credits and starts on November 13, 2018 in Barcelona.

It is based on an experiential methodology to help apply to practice the knowledge shared by the experts who organize the course and solve this kind of problems in the most satisfactory way possible taking into account the values ​​of the company in which you work, as well as the fundamental tools of mediation. For more information about this program, click on this link.

Lauren Mackler at Harvard Business School - Managing Conflict (July 2024).

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