We often hear about conflict in the workplace (and all areas of our lives). Why do we need to bother to address this? Conflict that festers turns into much larger issues later, negative emotions, lower productivity, etc. the list goes on and on. Here are some tips to help you lead with confidence through the conflict:
- Address conflict in the moment. Allowing some conflict to continue without addressing can lead to much larger issues down the road. Don't fall into this trap. When you see or hear conflict happening, be in that moment to assist.
- Know your team. It is important to understand who works for you through discussions, observations and coaching. The more you know your people, the more you can assist when conflict erupts and it helps you gain valuable respect as they see you handing conflict effectively.
- Understand individual differences. Everyone will handle conflict differently based on their experiences and knowledge. Conflict is grey, not black and white, so know not only how you will react to conflict but what will happen to your team members and team as a whole. You will be much better equipped if you take this approach.
- Confront the conflict head on. As a leader you need to be aware of your own reactions to conflict and not fear being vulnerable and leaning into the issues. Don't run, face them.