10 March 2022

Early intervention crucial to resolving conflict in the workplace

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people sitting at a communal desk

Conflict can feature within a family dynamic, between neighbours and in business. The workplace is no exception. Photo: File.

The seeds of conflict can start with something as simple as a funny look between colleagues. Left unaddressed, conflict can manifest into something much bigger.

Within a short period of time, those work colleagues can go from having a good working relationship to refusing to attend the same Zoom meeting.

When you think about conflict, it appears in most aspects of life. Conflict can feature within a family dynamic, between neighbours as well as in the workplace.

Conflict that arises in the workplace can escalate from a simple misunderstanding into a liability for an employer or even a change of job for an employee. Regardless of who is involved in the conflict, it has the potential to negatively affect an entire workplace. Sides form, workplace culture deteriorates and trust amongst team members rapidly disappears.

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Early intervention is the first step to resolving conflict in the workplace and avoiding greater effects.

“Without the benefit of early intervention, all too often we see workplace conflict escalate to bullying and harassment claims, fair work involvement and resignations from gifted employees,” Conflict Resolution Services CEO Melissa Haley says.

“It is hard enough to run a business or manage a team of people without the overlay of conflict.”

Upskilling employees with the ability to recognise conflict and identify various styles of conflict and appropriate ways to manage and resolve it, can do wonders for any workplace.

Learning about conflict and effective communication strategies leads to a better understanding and responses to disputes as well as increased confidence to take a proactive, rather than reactive, approach when faced with conflict.

Employees with this insight tend to be able to resolve conflict themselves not only in the workplace, but in all aspects of life.

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Early and effective conflict resolution will result in less stress and anxiety amongst staff and reduce those unexplained absences from the workplace.

With the delivery of workplace conflict and communication training, those colleagues who first shared a funny look can appropriately address the uncomfortable tension between them without it developing further.

As a result, internal resources are saved, work productivity continues and professional relationships are strengthened.

To learn more about the benefits of workplace conflict and communication training, visit Conflict Resolution Service.


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