How to manage conflicts in the workplace

by |
Research shows that co-workers are the number one reason people love their jobs, and it’s no secret that who you work with is just as, if not more, significant than who you work for. But when employees don’t enjoy the people they work with, the results can be just as negative.
  • 74% of employees report experiencing conflict at work (FindEmployment, 2014)
  • 20% of those who experienced conflict said it was ‘very serious’
  • 46% of those who experienced conflict said it was with a co-worker

Ensure employees know what channels are available 

While most companies do offer conflict resolution services though HR, not all companies communicate that to staff. By reassuring people that you are listening, and that inquiries are confidential, you will be able to solve conflicts sooner rather than later.

Consider generational differences in communication

A survey by the ASTD Workforce Development Community found that 1 in 4 workers avoid conflict with colleagues of a different generation. This can lead to poor communication, exacerbating the issue at hand, said study author Joseph Grenny. "We were struck by the irony in the stories we collected," he said. "Some insisted that 'She's lazy because she's old' while others said 'She's lazy because she's young!'"

Equip managers with specific guidelines 

When the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution examined 1,000 UK workers, they found that 46% of managers did not have confidence in their own ability to resolve the disputes of their staff. By providing direct supervisors with the right tools and procedures, you can improve efficiency, and prevent nasty legal complications if a manager makes a wrong step.

More like this:

Medical marijuana – it’s all about impairment 

When to fire a star-employee who’s lost their spark 

E-learning: don’t forget to support staff 
  • Tom from Burnaby BC on 2015-06-01 1:31:56 PM

    Unless you have good supervisory management you will have many issues.

    A restaurant near us has constant turnover? Asked why and found out the training program was fraught with inconsistencies.

    I teach an effective supervision course aimed at front line supervisors and when I find out how some supervisors manage the workforce it is clear why training issues exist.

    When workers are not trained about the job consistently by supervisors who are promoted because they have been there a little longer than new employees.

    this will affect the business bottom line real quick.

HRM Online forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

Name (required)
Comment (required)
By submitting, I agree to the Terms & Conditions