Managing Conflict

There are differing styles for approaching conflict, which creates challenges for teams. Many people are afraid of conflict so they avoid it, resulting in unnamed tension.  Others find conflict exciting, and see it as intellectually stimulating. Using images can provide a method to talk about conflict in an indirect way, surfacing the underlying issues in a way that feels safer to many people. The conversation shifts to focus on the photographs rather than on the other people.

Take a look at the Managing Conflict Sample Agenda.

There are differing styles for approaching conflict, which creates challenges for teams. Many people are afraid of conflict so they avoid it, resulting in unnamed tension.  Others find conflict exciting, and see it as intellectually stimulating. Using images can provide a method to talk about conflict in an indirect way, surfacing the underlying issues in a way that feels safer to many people. The conversation shifts to focus on the photographs rather than on the other people.

It’s possible that a team will contain people who have never learned healthy ways to address conflict. Others may assume that what they learned in their families is what everyone does. This is an area where there may be many assumptions without a lot of common language to talk about it. Using the images to drill down and see each other’s differences can be very helpful sorting this out.

One question on participants’ minds may be,  “How can we get along better?”

Focus on this area when:

  • Respecting conflict styles
  • Developing healthy problem solving
  • Engaging constructively

 

Building Great Teams is also available in a printed version.