Conflict within any business can feel like an inevitable part of management. After all, people don’t get along 100% of the time, and when you spend most of your time at work, it’s natural for issues to arise. These issues can range from minor disputes, such as whose turn it is to make a round of drinks, to more significant problems which can seriously affect the morale and productivity of the office. For the significant issues, it’s essential to address them promptly and come to some sort of agreement. Below, you will find ways to deal with conflict in your business to ensure it is settled quickly and fairly.
Communication is critical within a business; it reduces the risk of misinformation, eliminates a lack of vital information, and stops companies from wasting employees’ time. When communication isn’t clear and concise, it can quickly lead to conflict as both parties struggle to understand what the other wants or needs. Deal with conflict quickly, and potentially stop it in its tracks, by making sure every employee knows how to communicate accurately and timely.
Communication also includes listening carefully, however. Clear communication is pointless if the other party can’t or won’t listen. To ensure your employees listen properly to each other, make sure they don’t interrupt the other person, and make sure that they are comfortable with asking the other party to repeat the information if they don’t understand it.
Understand the Emotions of Both Parties
Emotions drive human behavior and relationships, which can then drive decisions within the workplace, especially around people you have worked with for a long period of time. While the conflict may seem unnecessary to you, you need to be able to see both sides of the story. Try not to jump to conclusions and assume one party is in the wrong. Instead, take each employee to a quiet area of the office and ask their opinion. Reserve judgment until both views are heard, and then you will be able to understand the emotions that are driving the conflict. If one person feels unfairly discriminated against, for example, it’s crucial to find out exactly why they feel that way.
Invest in Training
If you feel uncomfortable dealing with conflict, perhaps because you’re a new manager, or this is your first business, invest in extra training so you can confidently and professionally settle workplace conflicts quickly and efficiently. Corporate Coach Group, for example, provide expert corporate coaching to ensure that you use reason and logic to deal with conflict, rather than letting emotions get the better of yourself and your employees. Training will also enable you to use language and body language more effectively, which will reduce the risk of the conflict getting worse.
Conflicts arise in businesses regardless of the industry or size of the company. As a business owner, you need to be able to deal with conflict, ensuring it’s dealt with swiftly. Take the time to understand the best ways to do so and take the time to listen to each employee. After all, your employees may have their own ideas and experience to guide you in dealing with conflict.