Six Tips For Conflict Resolution In the Workplace
How To Solve Workplace Conflicts
There is a saying that goes "if you want to build a business, build the people". However, saying it is easy but human relations are not so simple to figure out without any help. Some people possess a natural affinity when it comes to interacting with people. Some people don't.
Regardless, most of them will still eventually run into a wall when it comes to a really difficult person that will boggle the minds of both groups of people. When it comes to this point, it is crucial that these problems are solved because people are the gears that keep the machine running, so you want to keep people happy and fulfilled. This is why we have come up with a guide for those perplexed by these situations. Another way to make your life easier is to ensure efficient payroll processes. For instance, did you know you can actually produce check stubs online as well?
1. Take the time to review the situation
There are always two sides of a story, in fact, there might be even more depending on the perspective that you take. In short, there is never only one truth to consider when it comes to human conflict. Chuck ideas of right and wrong out the window and get into the grey area. Always dig deep to find out what is causing the unhappiness of an individual, never settle for the surface answer. Whether the answer is related to the company or their own lifestyles, you can always help to make them feel better. There is always an opportunity to show that the company cares for them and they are not just part of the payroll. Furthermore, most situations need not be extremely complex, maybe all your employees needed was just a listening ear and a willing heart to help.
2. The time to act is always as soon as possible
Of course, you should take your time to review the problem and find a solution but once you do, do not sit on it for too long. Honestly, the best time to solve the situation is always the moment you take notice of the problem. If you are somewhat of a conflict-avoidant person, this is the time to step out of your comfort zone and grow from there. It is not easy to have the talk but you will need to do it. So, set aside your discomfort and bring yourself to approach your employee who is facing a difficult or unpleasant time. Once that is settled, nip office rumors in the bud as those can spread like wildfire and bring up a new problem. Plus, employees appreciate transparency so it would look good on the company to do so.
3. Human issues are delicate and should be dealt with privately
While it is good to publicly announce the resolution of a problem, the process should be kept private and confidential between you and the parties involved. Not only does this provide a safe space for employees to confide in you, expediting the process of getting to the bottom of the truth, it also prevents unnecessary information from spilling out to the rest. You definitely do not want undesirable comments getting out about you, your company, or the employee themselves. Rumors may seem harmless but they can cause major divisions in the company. Keeping things private also gives you a chance to be able to properly document what has been discussed without disruptions from your surroundings, to which we will elaborate more on why it is important in the last point.
4. There is temper in temperament
The one thing that hinders a peaceful resolution is definitely having a temper. When people are throwing tempers, they tend to be more defensive and obstinate to feedback. In fact, whatever is said may just add fuel to the fire which is counterproductive. As such, whether it is you or your employee if you feel any ire rising, it is best to step aside and calm down before proceeding with any discussions. As a leader, you must remind yourself that you should always act professionally. As for your subordinates, it would be good to give them some space first. The key thing to remember here is that a calm atmosphere is needed for rational discourse.
5. Complicated cases often take more time than expected
Humans are complicated. It takes us years to find out what a certain expression means and how to read people. In fact, even now, one might still need more practice in reading another person. So do not expect to immediately be able to resolve the issue. Do not be disheartened if the issue is not solved over a day, keep going at it. Communication is often more effective than people give it credit for. Remember, Rome was not built in a day. Understanding people and building long-standing relations definitely take a fair amount of time.
6. Always hold onto a black and white copy of all conversations
Recall from earlier that we mentioned it is important to hold onto documentation of conversations held. This is to protect yourself and your employees should future disputes arise over the details. In an ideal world, we would not need something like this but sad to say, we do not live in an ideal world. It is difficult to read people and even harder to tell if a person's actions and words are genuine. Furthermore, some cases do not end with smiles as some people may face real character problems which would then lead to outcomes that would create rifts like termination of employment. When you find yourself in these situations, you will be thanking your past self for documenting down all the interactions as some employees might bring it up to a lawsuit. With the black and white documents on your side, it really saves a lot of time and money. So, it is ideal to record and save these documents for at least a few years.
To end off, the thing about conflict resolution is that it involves people and their feelings which definitely require time and effort to breakthrough. So, be as sensitive and careful about the issue as if you are consoling a friend.