While you may not be working in an office setting with your coworkers anymore, that doesn’t mean conflict has gone away. In fact, everyone working from home causes its own set of communication issues and challenges that can also lead to conflict. That’s why it’s helpful to know how to de-escalate conversations that become heated, especially when these conversations don’t happen in person. In the end, it’s all about feeling what needs to be done and then acting accordingly. Here are some guidelines to help you resolve conflicts.
1. Embrace the conflict
When there is a conflict between yourself and a coworker or boss, don’t try to deny or control it. That kind of action tends to only create more tension in the long run. Face the music and address the source of tension as soon as you can. It is better to ask your coworker questions about the situation and their feelings than to draw conclusions on your own. Once you accept conflicts it’s easier to start to resolve conflicts.
2. Have a joint conversation
Once you’ve identified that there is indeed a conflict, set up a convenient time for you and the other person involved to discuss the situation freely without being interrupted.
As a dissertation help assistant and psychologist, I know that having to stop in the middle of the sentence can provoke anger or bitterness; the same goes for not having enough time to finish what you wanted to say. Both sides should hear each other out and have enough time to express their opinion on the issue at hand. That means making sure you don’t take over the whole conversation. Some people tend to monopolize a conversation or control the topics discussed, and that is never beneficial to anyone. Also, remind yourself that the most important rule of a conversation is to address one’s ideas, not attack the person. This is probably the most important rule you should both set up before the conversation starts.
3. Listen to both sides
It is crucial that you give importance to what the other party says, regardless of your subjective opinion on the situation. Do not interrupt them with a comment, unless it is to keep them aware that they are monopolizing the conversation. Make sure that you get the messages that they are trying to send and confirm that you understand where they are coming from. A good way to let them know that you recognize what they said would be repeating what they stated in other words. Adding “Let me make sure I get this….” in front of your confirmation sentence is very effective.
If you don’t understand something, ask questions! It is important to get the whole picture before drawing any conclusions. In the end, you are human, so they will understand that you need clarification. As assignment help coordinator, Dan James, recommends, “Make sure you don’t react to any of their statements. Conflict resolution is about understanding, not criticizing. Let them speak freely and listen with an open heart.”
4. Find the agreement between parties
Even if the conversation will primarily focus on the topic of disagreement, a good way to find resolution is by finding a common viewpoint. Focusing on the positive is more efficient than concentrating on the negative. So, after both of you argue your points, try to understand where you two connect. What were the commonalities of the conversation? What is one thing that both of you want?
Looking for a common viewpoint might make you understand that you are, in fact, striving for the same thing. You have the same objective but different means to achieve it. Seeking out common ground can only make both of you become more interested in what the other has to say and might, in the end, even lead to a friendship. Understanding were one another is coming from is key when you resolve conflicts.
5. Forgive and forget
Every conflict has its ups and downs. Make sure you focus on the ups. Remind yourself why you needed to have this conversation. What did you gain from it? What did the other party gain from it? Shake hands at the end of the conversation as a way to reconnect as humans and people. Apologize for causing them any inconveniences and be kind about it.
Solving conflicts in the workplace can be quite challenging but is nevertheless worth it. If you follow the guidelines above, you will add a great deal of comfort and calm to the conversation.