Conquering Conflict in Teams
People say the one constant in life – and business is change. However, there really are two, the other is conflict. While you strive for diversity in your culture, anytime you put a group of people together working with one another daily who have diverse thoughts, experiences, beliefs, ideas, talents, backgrounds, skill sets, and levels of skill sets, you’re going to have conflict. No where is this truer than on high performing teams. Let’s face it, these are competitive people otherwise they would not have made it where they are. Conflict is inevitable and a natural part of their DNA. As a leader don’t you have enough to do without having to manage team conflict?
Yes, you do have a lot on your plate, and yes, managing conflict comes with the territory. However, managing conflict doesn’t and shouldn’t be an all-consuming task. If conflict is eating away at your time or if you never seem to have conflict within your team, either way something is askew. This blog explores some ways to help reduce and manage conflict.
An Ounce of Prevention
Some conflict may be inevitable, some is unnecessary and preventable. Communication is a common yet simple conflict producing element to solve.
- Be clear
- Be transparent
- Be consistent
If you want to hire the best talent, then your organization, division, or department needs to be the best place to work.
- Benchmark the job
- Hire for the best fit for the job
- Don’t hire “yes men”
Most of the time we strive to avoid challenges. However, to be at the top of your game, you will need to meet some head on and even create some challenges to stay ahead of the competition.
- Analyze what your competition is doing better than you
- Examine other industries
- Look for places to acquire new partnerships, customers, and opportunities
In terms of your team. They too, will need challenges. Your top performers especially need projects that stretch and challenge them, otherwise, they will become bored and create havoc or just leave creating another kind of havoc.
There are activities that will always bring conflict. Change is a big one. But even the conflict usually surrounding this bugger can be tamed with preparation, planning, patience, and persistence. Change doesn’t always include large events such as a merger, layoff, or selloff. Even new tasks, processes, compliance changes, laws, and the like can bring conflict. Being prepared is half the battle.
Avoiding conflict doesn’t solve any problems and only causes larger more complex conflict to develop. Being a leader who selects the bury your head in the sand approach or ignoring conflict is not a leader at least not one who will succeed at building a high performing team. Conquering conflict is a part of how all great leaders build high performing teams.
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