At certain point in your college career, you’ll be engaged in some sort of conflict in work atmosphere. Whether it is a college roommate situation, working with a team for one of your class projects, working with others doing community service, engaging in an internship, or working a part-time job. Conflict is believed to be one of those things that often just happens and if you find yourself unprepared to deal with it, it can pose some serious consequences.
Here are eight tips for de-escalating conflict in work atmosphere:
Don’t Ignore Conflict
Since dispute is sometimes unavoidable, trying to ignore it when it already exists can result in critical consequences. Keeping things to yourself when an issue arises will not merely make you anxious but offers little chance of finding a solution. By speaking up and communicating about the cause of your stress, you’re opening up the lines of communication which then open the door for negotiation. If issues are left to simmer – instead of dealing them in a calm and respectful manner—they can easily escalate into heated arguments which may cause irreparable damage to an otherwise salvageable relationship.
Ignore Being Defensive
Being defensive is a strategy that doesn’t lead to a positive outcome when dealing with conflict. Instead of listening to the other person’s point of view and understanding their complaint, several individuals innately respond by defending themselves. They fail to consider that there may be a middle ground. Defensiveness can be problematic because rather than other person feeling as if they’re being heard, they walk away feeling discounted and have an overall sense that the other person is not willing to work together in order to iron things out.
Neglect Overgeneralizations in Work Atmosphere
Overgeneralizing often adds fuel to the fire. Statements like “you always” and “you never” are usually met with defensiveness and in most cases, they just aren’t totally true.
Work to See Both Sides
Often there is no right way or wrong way of doing things. The capability to see both sides of the situation can take the steam out of any argument. In the situation of college roommates, you have two individuals who may come from very different backgrounds who are trying to live in one very small room together. One student might prefer to study with the music on while the other requires an early bedtime and resents the fact that they do not have a quiet space in which to retire. This is a situation where conflict resolution can be helpful by having two people work to find a way that will meet both of their requirements.
For instance, perhaps the student who is playing music can use headphones so they do not disturb the other roommate.
Avoid Playing the Blame Game
Resolving conflict in work atmosphere is a great chance to assist improves a situation and ultimately offers a way to create healthy relationships. When you are in the heat of the moment and experiencing conflict, don’t express that nothing is your fault. By not taking responsibility for your part of the problem, you are not being resourceful in finding ways to improve the situation and mend the relationship.
Avoid the Requirement to Be Right
If you consider you’ve to win every argument or discussion, you’re losing the possibility to develop a stronger and more honest relationship. Of course, no one likes the feeling that they’re accused of being wrong; even if they are wrong. However, the need to be right all the time usually stems from a lack of self-confidence. If you find yourself in a discussion of “I’m right” and “you’re wrong,” try to see the humor in the situation which goes far to de-escalate any conflict.
Do not Attack Someone’s Character
Lobbing a character attack is believed to be one of the quickest ways to ruin a relationship. Announcing that another person is lazy, inconsiderate or dishonest will only lead to hurt feelings and perhaps retaliation with no chance of improving the situation.
Do not Stonewall
By stonewalling and not listening or taking the other person’s complaints seriously, you’ll likely create a feeling of frustration in the other person. No one likes to feel as though they’re not being listened to. By neglecting them and what they have to say, you’re saying that you do not care about their opinion and that you do not respect the relationship.