There are many factors that need to be considered when deciding to confront somebody and some conflict resolution strategies to do it in a smart way.
Conflicts appear all the time, and they are not easily solvable. But it’s much easier when you are use conflict resolution strategies.
You have to be courageous and exposed in order to find the key to the problem.
Expressing your feelings and emotions is challenging. You have to be calm, but direct, strict, but understanding, firm, but not aggressive.
Expressing your opinion in a clear, strong way is important. Many people tend to associate firmness with aggression, and this should never be the case. Make sure you are calm when you approach them, and you specify what your intentions are – otherwise, how could they know?
They will never be able to read your mind. Being assertive, actively listening to what they have to say, and managing your emotions when dealing with conflicts is crucial. Also, owning your part of the guilt is important too.
Even when we believe we did nothing wrong, there are small details that might play a crucial role in the entire conflict. Take a look at the list below and see which conflict resolution strategies you can master to solve any conflict!
1. Taking Action vs. Moving On
There are certain situations when we might not need to say anything. Sarah Lin, CEO at CUB Capital Partners, shares her thoughts.
“My co-workers and I follow the 24h rule if work conflict is inevitable. We think about the problem, analyze it, and sleep on it for 24h. If we can get over it, we stop thinking about the issue and never mention it again. If we can’t, we confront the person with respect. This has been very beneficial for our work environment. It brings people together and helps our team stay positive. Having inside conflicts does not help anybody get the job done. Having a favorable environment does.”
For example, if your colleagues are taking too many coffee breaks in one day and that annoys you, make sure you don’t react immediately. See if they do the same tomorrow, and think about how much it actually bothers you. If you cannot get over it, then you can confront them respectfully the next day.
2. Work With Them
Resolving a conflict is for many people a matter of power, and this should never be the case. Resolving a conflict should be considered teamwork. Think about it – both parties discuss the problem maturely, fully engage in the conversation, and establish common terms at the end of it.
That means the conclusion of the conflict should be a common ground that they have reached – and isn’t that teamwork? That is exactly what it is.
There are some basic steps you need to follow when resolving a conflict. Take a look:
- Describe your view clearly and entirely. Do not omit any details. Do not raise your voice. Stay smart and focus on the issue debated.
- Express how the problem made you feel, how it affected you, and why you felt they were unfair to you.
- Underline the main problems that need to be changed from your perspective and talk about the steps that need to be taken further on.
Working as a team and collaborating is very important when you want to resolve a conflict. You have to work together if you want to accomplish something because it is a problem that affects you both!
3. Detach Yourself from The Problem
In order for you to have a productive conversation, take these following points into consideration as well:
- Provide evidence for you claim – why, when, how it happened.
- Separate the person from the issue – it is nothing personal, everything is based on facts.
- Highlight the impact it had on you – it’s your reaction, it affected your values, it is important to you because…
- Relate to them – “I used to do this too when….”
- Ask them to tell you if you do something wrong.
If it is too much at once, make sure you ask them to take a quick break. During this time, you can focus on your personal reactions to their behaviors. If you feel the need to change your attitude, do it! There is no better time, to be honest than right now.
You can also think of something that relaxes you during this break. For example, when I get upset, I think about the reasons behind it. Why am I angry? Is it normal to react like that? What outcomes will come out of it?
The reasons behind my actions give me comfort, because I know I am working towards a more positive relationship.
4. Time for Negotiating
When you have finally reached a conclusion, you need to set future terms. It is normal that both parties want to have more to say in the future terms, so make sure you know what you ask for. Think about the conclusion before starting to solve the conflict.
That way you will always be prepared. Here are some conflict resolution strategies for negotiations:
- Hear their requests and work with them
- Concentrate on the issues debated and do not deviate from them
- Make time your friend and make sure you finish the conversation on time (and that implies you saying everything you need to during that time)
- Stay honest when talking about your intentions – they have the right to know why you want something from them, how does it benefit you
Whether they’re part of our personal or professional life, conflicts are going to show up everywhere – and that is awesome! It means people stand up for themselves and have opinions. Confrontation opens the doors for better conversations and brings people closer.
If solved, disagreements actually benefit both parties and bring harmony into the relationship. Choose your conflicts, and solve them smartly with these conflict resolution strategies!