One of the most important components of successful leadership is the ability to facilitate conflict resolution in the workplace. At some point in your career, you will inevitably experience a team conflict that needs to be solved. In many ways, conflict is necessary to achieve great results— it’s a necessary step toward critically evaluating ideas and processes. Conflict can also generate entirely new concepts and ideas. While it can be tricky and uncomfortable to navigate, it is not impossible.
Here are three steps to guide you through the challenges and work toward a solution.
- Assess: It is essential to remain impartial when listening to both sides of any argument. Try to keep calm and see the value and merits of each before facilitating the resolution.
- Facilitate: In a successful conflict resolution, it is key that all participants understand that the goal is not to have a clear winner and loser. The goal is to solve one common problem. There can be no personal agenda. Keep calm, and help open the channels of communication to encourage all parties involved to reach a resolution. Keep yourself open to various ways of facilitating the resolution— sometimes the office boardroom isn’t always the best environment to open everyone to compromise. A unique experience like group drumming with Drum Cafe West can be exactly what a team needs to change their perceptions of one another and value the contributions of each team member. On several occasions, we’ve had clients share that deep rooted conflicts in their organizations were being easily resolved following the team’s drumming workshop.
- Celebrate: Once the conflict is resolved, take a moment to acknowledge a job well done. It is important to acknowledge that in the process of resolving the conflict, deeper connections and understanding can be forged. Successful conflict resolution can often build a strong sense of trust among team members and leadership, and can encourage future creative thinking. Once members feel comfortable having conflict and know how to work through it, great work can begin. The celebration of resolution can be just as important as the facilitation.
Next time an employee approaches you with a problem, think back to these three tips. Utilizing these methods could be what generates your organization’s next big idea.