The earlier you recognize and manage a conflict, the better it influences your office atmosphere. If you are lucky, you can resolve conflicts or at least neutralize them.

During a conversation, what seems to be a conflict can often turn out to be a mere misunderstanding.

Conflicts can only be detected by talking about them, and those who avoid doing that cause a conflict to escalate.

Avoid Conflicts

Some believe that conflicts should be avoided at all costs. That’s not exactly right. Conflicts happen when we interact with other people, and that is unavoidable. The question is: how do we deal with them? Conflicts do not just go away.

Sometimes, people have different values and even conflicting goals. Sometimes, you can resolve conflicts when you talk about them, and sometimes you don’t. But if you talk about issues, you can at least make sure problems don’t escalate.

Remember: avoiding conflicts doesn’t mean achieving harmony. On the contrary, that disrupts the balance. Conflicts can be turning points for better coexistence!

How Do You Recognize Conflicts?

How can you recognize conflict at a subliminal level? Are there any common aspects, noticing which can help you see the beginning of the problem. Are the conflicts among marketers different much from ones that writers working with have? Every fight starts with tension. But not every tension is a conflict.

Now and then, people have a clash of opinions. And when they do, things get loud, even without it being a conflict. But you have to be careful: sometimes things can turn really ugly.

Typical Signs of a Conflict

When you feel a conflict approach, pay attention to your surroundings. There can be a problem among the employees if:

  • People no longer talk to each other
  • Information is deliberately withheld
  • Gossip and sarcastic comments are increasing

There are also less obvious conflict signals, such as growing disinterest:

  • Only the most necessary things are done
  • Decisions aren’t made
  • Mistakes accumulated
  • Regulations are not properly adhered to.

These signals can point to a smoldering conflict. Regardless of whether it is really an issue, it is important to take precautions. You need to identify the behavior that strikes you as abnormal and then talk to the other person.

Your Own Feelings

Sometimes, you recognize feelings or behavior that provokes conflict, such as anger or grief. Think about why you are really upset, disappointed, or scared. Is it a reaction to the behavior of another person?

Or is it, for example, the fear of losing your job? The sooner you take your emotions and feelings seriously, the better you can control them.

Things You Can Control

Getting another person to behave differently is usually tedious and difficult. Sometimes, it can even be impossible — you have no influence over many situations. However, you have full control over how you react.

Therefore, you shouldn’t suppress your feelings or wait until things get out of hand. Instead, you should be able to identify conflict situations, analyze them, and control your own behavior.

If the conflict situation has not yet escalated or you could de-escalate it, you can frequently find a solution together with other people.

Not Every Conflict Can be Resolved

Sometimes, a strong conflict of objectives may be persistent. Nevertheless, both parties can agree on a reasonable compromise. They both understand and accept each other’s goals and are prepared to seek a mutually acceptable solution reasonably.

Each side goes for small compromises to make some progress, and a win-win solution comes about. That is also an acceptable solution.

How to Handle Conflicts That Escalate

Sometimes, conflicts can escalate to such an extent that a third party should interfere. Their task is to de-escalate the situation and try to find an appropriate solution.

Research the Cause

When you realize that there is a conflict, you should ask yourself:

  • What is the reason for the conflict?
  • Why did it break out?
  • What situation has triggered it?

Investigate the cause. What does the other party want to want? Then, try putting yourself in their shoes. What would you do if you were them? How would you behave? Be careful not to put all the blame on them.

If you are firmly convinced that you are right, you should keep in mind the following statement:

“The more you feel right, the higher the chance of a fight!”

Conflicts frequently escalate because one side accuses the other of bad intentions.

Try to Put Yourself in the Other Person’s Position

Your coworker is late for work. They look very tired. They must have had a party and did not go to bed until 4 or 5 am.

That’s it. This time, it’s going to be a warning. Why? Because the guy’s private life seems to be more important to them than their job. However, things may not be as simple as they look.

Your coworker is really tired. But only because he completed the final report for the major project on time. He worked late into the night to make an influential customer happy. And what do you do? You drive them crazy because you accuse them of putting their private life before their professional duty.

Whenever conflict situations like this occur, you should ask yourself:

“What if the other person acted with good intentions?”

Even if it is really hard, it can help prevent the conflict from escalating.

7 Tips for Solving or Defusing Conflicts

  1. Investigate the Cause.
    So why did the conflict break out? What feelings cause it? Who suffers the most?
  2. Avoid Blaming Others.
    Look for solutions and not accuse people.
  3. Change Perspective.
    Are you trying to understand each other’s intentions? You need to be empathetic, even if it’s hard. Listen to the other person without interrupting and judging them.
  4. Try to Put Yourself in the Other Person’s Position.
    Remember — every cloud has a silver lining.
  5. Tell Openly How You Feel.
    Avoid insults and insinuations. Talk about your own feelings, what that conflict means to you, and how it makes you feel.
  6. Ask Your Opponent for Their Ideas on How to Resolve the Conflict. Let them explain their solution. Suggest a slightly modified solution or alternative if the proposed solution is unacceptable.
  7. Accept Help.
    If the situation has already escalated, the only way to de-escalate it is to engage a third party as a moderator.

Relationships between workers is frequently a key element of good work. So, we hope this article will help you manage any conflict easily.