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Handle Workplace Conflict among Staff Members

July 15th, 2015

As a manager, the human element of your workplace is one of the most difficult and important things to keep under control. People working in shared spaces or stressful situations, leads to inevitable conflicts – regardless of the employer or the team in place. But it is the manager’s duty to put an end to these conflicts before they start to compromise performance, lead to turnover, and affect recruiting. The next time tempers flare up, turn to the strategies we’ve outlined below.

Make the Limits of Acceptable Behavior Well Known

Often workplace conflicts arise simply because staff members don’t realize they are disrespecting each other. It’s up to you to prevent this confusion before it starts. Make sure that the delegation of authority is clear for all staff members, that people understand the obligations and boundaries of their job description, and that codes of conduct are clearly defined.

Stop Conflicts Before They Start

You spend as much time in the office as the rest of your staff members, and you can probably tell when conflicts are simmering. Take steps to resolve the conflict before it heats up to a boil and you make things easier for everyone. Keep your eyes and ears open during meetings and conversations with staff for any potential points of friction.

Respect All Parties

Even when one party is clearly the offending one in a conflict, don’t immediately place all the fault on their shoulders. That strategy tends to produce bitterness and rarely resolves the underlying causes of the conflict. Listen to all parties in full, and strive for a resolution that leaves everyone involved feeling served rather than punished.

Pick Your Battles Carefully

Conflicts are inevitable, but not all of them require your intervention. Rational minds usually prevail, and often conflicts resolve themselves on their own once staff members have time to cool off. If you step into a conflict that would otherwise naturally run its course you only risk making it worse.

Turn Conflicts into Opportunities

The goal of any conflict resolution process is for all parties involved to feel respected and acknowledged. As a manager, this can prove to be an asset for you. When handled correctly, a conflict can turn into a huge opportunity for team building, innovation, and learning. Whenever you initiate a conflict resolution, make it your goal for your team to come out of it stronger.

The best way to resolve conflicts is to prevent them in the first place. And to do that you need to have a great team on your side. Find candidates with the maturity and professionalism you’re looking for by working with the recruiting experts at The Concorde Group. We place employees in jobs in Westchester and more.

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