Resolving and Dealing with Team Conflicts

In every team, conflicts are inevitable and are something that will occur from time to time. Every member always has their own views and opinions regarding a certain matter which leads to an argument under the right set of circumstances. At some point, many have experienced productivity loss, shortage of ideas or creativity and lack of focus because of this slight misunderstanding.

Conflict in a company or in a team isn’t always negative and disadvantageous. In fact, having this in your team simply means that majority in the office are expressing their right to speak up and contribute new ideas that can result to the improvement of the operations and of the company as a whole. When properly managed, the whole conflict can become a positive learning experience for the whole company.

However, if you ignore the conflict and just let the argument pass without having an intervention or closure, communication between the members becomes unprofessional and awkward that may generate a larger mess. Given the fact that disregarding the conflict leads to negative results, it is important to know how a conflict must be dealt with to avoid worsening the situation.

Direct Approach

This may be the hardest, but it is the best approach you can do to the person or team you’ve had a conflict with. Now, you all know how uncomfortable and awkward the whole method is going to be, but this is the best process for both sides to assess the issues objectively and for everyone to give their points clearly.  Let this be a long process. The important thing is that both sides will be able to contribute their own techniques, ideas and strategies, and more importantly, the confrontation will adjourn with everyone having a sense of resolution and realization.

In this long procedure, AVOID doing the following to prevent worsening the situation.

  1. Finger pointing. You are not in the confrontation process to pinpoint a person and blame him or her for doing something you don’t like. Finger pointing increases the tension in the room and does not resolve anything.

  1. Giving threats. Pushing people to do things your way is definitely not a wise move in promoting teamwork and will definitely not lead to the success of your projects. The goal of the confrontation is to have a clear view on the matter you’re talking about and for everyone to agree on a certain decision. Everyone’s opinion counts and no opinion is prohibited to be said.

  1. Being defensive. Being defensive builds a wall between you and the other party. Have a self evaluation before you enter the confrontation and know whether or not you have done something wrong and offensive. If you have, then simply accept the criticism your team mate throw at you. I mean, it’s always better if people pitch negative things about you in your face than behind your back, right?

Team Building

If you’re one of the big bosses of the company, let your employees have fun every once in a while. If your team has been in a huge conflict, organize a team building or retreat activity not just for them to relax during their day off, but also to improve their teamwork and working relationship. Every employee deserves to have a two-three days escape from office work with the company.

Location will definitely not be a problem as there are many team building venues here in the Philippines, specifically in Tagaytay that can give your company the relaxation and fun they deserve. In the actual retreat day, perform different activities and games that can boost everyone’s confidence, communication skills, and team management. Also, let this event be the bridge to fixing and resolving whatever problems or conflicts hunting them for the past months at work. After this fun process, everyone can go back home and at work with the light revived and relieved feeling.

Conflicts can always be resolved as long as everyone gets to deal and manage the situation well. Respecting the differences and opinions of the other party is one of the key solutions to fixing the argument and improving the healthy and creative atmosphere surrounding the whole team. If everyone opens their minds and hearts to the assumptions and ideas of the pertaining party, new way of thinking will be unlocked leading to a more innovative and healthy team performance.

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Tess Gabut

About Tess Gabut

Tess Gabut is the Consultant and Operations Manager of Villa De Oro (VDO) – Tagaytay. Aside from managing VDO, she also teaches Human Resource Development, Cost/ Systems Control in an academe in Las Pinas City. You can follow her at Google

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