Conflict is an inevitable part of work. We've all seen situations where people with different goals and needs have clashed, and we've all witnessed the often-intense personal animosity that can result. When employees disagree there needs to be a procedure in place to deal with it before it gets out of hand.
Introduce episode: If you want to keep your team members working effectively, despite coming into conflict with one another, you need to stop this downward spiral as soon as you can. To do this, it helps to understand one of the key processes for effective conflict resolution: The Interest-Based Relational approach.
1:15 Who benefits from this show? Small business managers or owners
2:00 Talking points: (8:00 mins)
When conflict arises, it's easy for people to get entrenched in their positions and for tempers to flare, voices to rise, and body language to become defensive or aggressive. You can avoid all of this by using the Interest-Based Relational (IBR) approach.
10:00 Tips for improving in this area or overcoming this problem:
There are other benefits that you might not expect, such as:
But conflict can also be damaging. If you don't handle it effectively, it can quickly turn into personal dislike, teamwork can break down, and talent may be wasted as people disengage from their work and leave.
Roger Fisher and William Ury developed the IBR approach and published it in their 1981 book, "Getting to Yes." They argue that you should resolve conflicts by separating people and their emotions from the problem. Their approach also focuses on building mutual respect and understanding, and it encourages you to resolve conflict in a united, cooperative way.
The approach is based on the idea that your role as a manager is not simply to resolve conflict but to ensure that team members feel respected and understood, and that you appreciate their differences. It helps you to manage conflict in a civil and "grown up" way.
During the process, your focus should be on behaving courteously and consensually, and on insisting that others do the same. Your priority is to help each side develop an understanding of the other's position, and to encourage both to reach a consensus – even if that means agreeing to disagree.
To use the IBR approach effectively, everyone involved should listen actively and empathetically, have a good understanding of body language , be emotionally intelligent , and understand how to employ different anger management techniques. You and the conflicting parties need to follow these six steps:
19:00 Closing comments:
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20:00 Show ends
Watch this slide show to learn more about how to resolve conflicts in your workplace