7 Steps to Successful Conflict Management Framework
Better You,  Conflict Management,  Cutting Edge

7 Steps to Successful Conflict Management Framework

One of the most important skillsets of world leaders, business leaders, pastors and counsellor must possess is the ability to manage conflict. We live in a very conflicting world with competing priorities, personalities and perspectives. Conflict is everywhere; at home, at work, even in church, conflict management skills is so essential to our success and emotional health. Not only does it lead to tangible outcomes that you desire, it builds healthier relationships both at home and the workplace, leading to a happier and more effective you! Ultimately, it’s not “what” you know, but “who” you know, and managing the “who” is paramount to your success.

A study conducted in America showed that employees spend nearly 3 hours a week on workplace conflict, which in Singapore’s context, amounts to a whooping SGD 190 billion and 475,000 days of productivity lost per week! 123 Hence, learning the art of conflict management not only saves you the emotional turmoil, it allows you to channel your time and energy to doing productive work.

“it’s not “what” you know, but “who” you know, and managing the “who” is paramount to your success.”

This is all the more relevant in the current climate of telecommuting to combat the global pandemic, with the new ways of working and physical distancing, which could strain clarity of communication and decision making.

On to the multi-billion dollar question (literally!) – how do we effectively navigate through conflicts such that both parties leave the conversation feeling at ease and ready to move forward productively?

Recently in my Conflict Management Workshop, I shared a framework with 7 steps to successful Conflict Management Framework, hopefully this too can help you successfully manage the conflicts in your lives and derive positive outcomes.

1. Take the initiative

2. Confess my part of the conflict

3. Listen to the hurt. Hurt people hurt people

4. The power of sequence

5. Tell the truth tactfully

6. Fix the problem not the blame

7. Focus on reconciliation not resolution

Yes, I am saying, take initiative to confess your part of the conflict. (“what Rick!? But it’s the other person’s fault too.” Yes, you heard me right.) Try it, it works almost 10/10 times!

I recently met a friend, Marilynn*, who lost all motivation due to persisting disagreements with her immediate superior concerning work arrangements. For the longest time, she thought that the best way was to shove issues under the rug (like a typical non-confrontational Asian employee would do), but it came to a point where she was so unhappy and ready to tender her resignation. However, after attending my Conflict Management Workshop, she was able to utilise the simple yet powerful techniques that was taught and addressed the issue with her superior. I was delighted to hear that she reached a win-win situation. Not only did she receive more than what she requested for, it also left her boss pleased that he retained a capable employee.

You could be Marilynn. Managing conflict does not have to be a difficult process and can be done in small steps that you can start today. If you feel like you are fearful or worried about approaching your conflicts, read how you can overcome those fear here. I hope the approach above will transform the way you deal with people challenges leading to a healthier, happier and more effective you, and harness the best synergies within your teams.

1. Myers-Briggs Assessment and the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument
2. http://www.salaryexplorer.com/salary-survey.php?loc=196&loctype=1
3. https://tradingeconomics.com/singapore/employed-persons

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