Sunday, February 5, 2012

Handling Conflict

Sorry that I've been gone a while! I recently added several hats to my repertoire and I'm still working on finding balance. I'll continue to write as I can, though, and hope you find the info helpful.

This week in my class we discussed conflict. Not a happy topic, but one with which we can all relate.
Here are some short and sweet tips we discussed:

How to handle conflict
managing conflict: dysfunctional strategies:
do not say “we need to communicate more” or  “cooperate more”
do not blame the other person
do not attack the other person
do not be too general (specificity provides a starting point)
do not avoid conflict
do not try to keep people talking so long that they give up (people will vote ‘yes’ just to resolve the conflict)
managing conflict: functional strategies:
identify your problem and desires
express disagreement tactfully
listen actively (paraphrase, ask questions, focus on what they are saying instead of what YOU want to say)
persuade others of the value of conflict
develop trust
don’t take disagreement personal rejection
demonstrate cooperativeness if your suggestion is rejected

These strategies can be used in families, friendship, and business relationships. Try to remember that generally speaking we are on the same team. Try to take your focus off YOURSELF and focus on a common goal - solving the problem. 

Happy Communicating!


  1. Great reminder Andrea! Avoiding conflict comes naturally but it doesn't make the problem go away. It usually exacerbates the issues! Thanks for sharing. Jackie

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