When your employees are giving each other the stink eye, do everything you can to bring their focus back to the task at hand. Remind them that there’s work to be done, and that the longer their conflict takes place, the further back your team will fall as a whole. Your employees will likely come to their senses and realize in-fighting is detrimental to their performance and overall productivity.
2. Set Clear Guidelines
Taking a proactive approach is also a great tactic to workplace conflicts. Poor communication and personality clashes are two of the leading causes of conflict in the workplace, and planning for these situations before they happen is beneficial to everyone. Specifically, you’ll want to develop a formal complaint process, one in which employees know who to go to when they have issues with each other and which steps to take to report the conflict.
3. Keep it Private
If you have a work environment that’s tolerant of differing opinions and viewpoints, one issue you might notice is that your employees feel they can discuss workplace conflicts in the open with each other. While it’s healthy to be open with your feelings, it’s not always healthy to be open in the open where everyone can see you. Instead, make sure conflict resolution only involves the individuals who are engaged in the disagreement. While other employees are sure to draw their own conclusions about what’s taking place behind closed doors, they can and should do so while tending to their own work in order to salvage productivity. Don’t let workplace conflict be a train wreck to which everyone has a front row seat.
4. Prepare Your Managers
You won’t always be there to take care of workplace conflicts, and when you aren’t, your managers and supervisors should know exactly what to do without calling you. Parents don’t have their grandparents scold their own grandkids, so your managers and supervisors should have the training necessary to handle conflict. Don’t have managers who simply tell employees to ïwork it out,ï or managers who leave employees feeling dissatisfied with their attempts at taking care of a problem. Types of training that help managers handle and prevent conflicts include negotiation and mediation skills. What these skills do is allow your managers to become better listeners and more empathetic, which can be of great help even when there isn’t a conflict brewing in the workplace.
5. Make Sure Employees Understand Their Responsibilities and Roles
The reason we have turn signals on our automobiles is so other drivers are clear on what’s going on and where we’re going, and the same is true of having clearly defined roles and responsibilities in the workplace. Let employees know what they’re supposed to do, how their work contributes to the process and why that role is important. Clarification solidifies understanding and lessens the chance of employees overstepping their bounds. It’s when employees lack guidance and feel their commitments aren’t essential that the possibilities for workplace conflicts arise.
6. Clarify Priorities
Once your team knows what their individual roles are, you should next tell them which of their responsibilities take precedence. Doing so lets employees know where they should devote most of their energy and how they should schedule their workloads. Without this clarity, employees might become upset or frustrated with each other when deadlines or goals go unmet, especially when it becomes clear that the fault lies with one or two individuals. To help keep everyone on track and on schedule, you can utilize project management software or simply bring in an actual project manager should your need be great enough. Project management is a great way to reduce the chances of workplace conflict, and can also be a monumental help when it comes to successfully meeting your company goals and doing so according to schedule. Feeling conflicted on how to make all-star hires and bettering your business? Mighty Recruiter has plenty of expert tools and articles to help you resolve your situation quickly and efficiently.