Conflict in organizations is inevitable, as employees and volunteers have different personalities, goals, and opinions.
Learning how to handle conflict effectively is a necessary skill for anyone in a leadership role and it is key to preventing conflict from hindering the organization’s growth.
Here are 5 simple steps for conflict resolution for those with responsibilities at a Board Level, on a staff team, Camp Director level, and more.
As a person in a leadership position you need to give both parties the chance to share their side of the story. It will give you a better understanding of the situation, as well as demonstrate your impartiality. It is important to practice active listening. You can do this by acknowledging the information you hear and encouraging the speaker to continue to open up to you. As a suggestion, you can say reassuring sentences as “I see” or “I understand your point of view”. It is important that you mean it when you say these things so make sure you are actually listening well.
The source of the conflict might be a minor problem that occurred months before, but the level of stress has grown to the point where the two parties have begun attacking each other instead of addressing the real problem. Once again, probing questions will help, like, “What do you think happened here?” or “When do you think the problem first arose?”.
As a person in the “middle”, you must be an active listener, aware of everything that is said. You must also take into consideration body language.Your goal is to get those involved to stop fighting and start cooperating, and that means steering the discussion away from arguing and toward ways of resolving the conflict.
– Hosherdar Polad