Communication Skills Training in the WorkplaceConflict in business is inevitable. As hard as it can be to confront conflict head on… it’s important to know how to turn differences of opinion—and even outright antagonism—into something that can be useful and productive.

First, don’t demonize a colleague with whom you have a conflict.

Instead, be empathetic.  Go out of your way to understand your colleague’s thought processes.  Evaluate what went wrong. Think about your role in the situation.

Then address the matter… in private, where you won’t be overheard or interrupted.

Begin by talking about his or her cares and concerns. Build on any common ground. You may find that the source of conflict is actually an area of mutual interest, letting you turn a potentially destructive situation into an opportunity for enhanced performance.

Explain your values and goals positively.  Describe the behavior or results you would view as productive. Make your expectations clear—but again, do it positively. Offer suggestions for getting beyond the conflict.  Reaffirm your desire for an effective working relationship.

If the situation begins to go awry, increase the communication rather than shutting it down.  You have a responsibility to accept feedback.

When you bring your convictions—and compassion—to working through conflict… you’re sure to succeed.


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