Creating an Effective Atmosphere for Conflict Resolution in Your Team

Conflict Resolution
Image Source: RyanMcGuire

When two or more people get together there is the possibility of conflict.  People are different, and when these differences come to light, conflict happens. When people are involved in conflict, there is typically negative emotions such anger, frustration and disappointment. By establishing a positive atmosphere in your team, you can turn the negative energy around and build a strong platform for the conflict resolution process.

Neutralizing Emotions during the Conflict

For the resolution process to begin, it is essential that both parties must agree that they want to resolve the conflict. Once they have agreed to resolve the conflict, the next step is to neutralize as many negative emotions as possible. The participants must be given enough time to vent and work through the feelings associated with the conflict.

Key steps to neutralizing emotions in the conflict resolution process:

  • Accept that you have negative feelings and that these feelings are normal.
  • Acknowledge the feelings and their root causes.
  • Identify how you might resolve your feelings.

Set the Ground Rules for Conflict Resolution

Ground rules provide the framework for resolving conflict and should be set at the beginning of any conflict resolution process. Depending on the situation, these ground rules can be extremely brief or highly detailed. The ground rules can be referred to by the participants throughout the conflict resolution process. These ground rules give the participants and objective way of addressing personal attacks and emotional issues.

Guidelines for ground rules:

  • The ground rules should be developed and agreed upon by all parties involved.
  • The ground rules should be positive as far as it possible.
  • The ground rules should be fair to both parties.
  • The ground rules should be enforceable.
  • The ground rules should be adjustable.
  • The ground rules should be written and posted where both parties can refer to them.

Some of the ground rules that can be set include:

  • We will listen to each other’s statements thoroughly before responding.
  • We will work together to achieve a mutually satisfactory solution.
  • We will respect each other as individuals, and therefore not engage in personal insults and attacks.

Choosing the Right Time and Place for Conflict Resolution

Choosing the right time and place is an essential part of successful conflict resolution.  You will not have much success trying to resolve a serious issue in the team, five minutes before the end of a shift. Whenever possible, you should choose a quiet place to discuss the conflict. Make sure there is enough time allowed and minimize distractions. Keep the needs of both parties in mind when scheduling the meeting. Make sure the time chosen works well for both of them and choose a neutral location. Remove any distractions so that both parties can concentrate on resolving the conflict.



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