As discord is the enemy of profitability, this week on the Htet Tayza blog I want to share how to handle conflict in the workplace.
A Business Leader is only as Good as the People They Hire
A recent survey of 500 small businesses in the UK found that the preferred business mentor for most SME’s is Richard Branson. So why is he seen as such an ideal role model? Because as he explains in a blog post, a business leader is only as good as the people they hire.
Companies sink or swim based on the quality, and ability to work, of their employees. This is why any budding entrepreneur needs to be especially wary of office conflict. It sows discord, which makes for a toxic work environment that will soon have your most talented members of staff fleeing your enterprise in droves.
Use These Steps to Diffuse Office Conflict
That is why if you are looking to develop a successful business venture, you need to know how to diffuse office conflict; which you can do by implementing the following steps…
- Act Immediately: The longer you take to intervene in an office argument, the more likely it is to escalate. That is why you need to act the minute your attention is alerted to an office conflict.
- Isolate The Offenders: You need to immediately isolate the offenders for two reasons. Firstly, it removes distraction and allows the rest of your staff to get back to work. Secondly, it makes it easier for you to speak to the offending parties.
- Get Both Sides of the Story: Once you’ve isolated the offenders, listen to what both have to say. Only then can you get an accurate idea of what has happened, and come up with a resolution.
- Act as Negotiator: After you’ve heard both sides of the story, get the employees in question to talk things out, whilst acting as negotiator. If you don’t take this step, tensions will not be resolved and are likely to erupt again, causing more workplace conflict.
- Outline a Solution: When both employees have talked things out, step up as a leader and outline a solution for how they are going to go about solving the problem at hand. That way, it won’t become an issue again.
- Get Authoritative: Before letting the employees leave, remind them that this is a place of work, and such behaviour will not be tolerated again. That way, they will think twice about the consequences before spurring on any more conflict in the workplace.
Resolve Conflicts Before They Damage Your Company’s Bottom Line
If you follow his guide, you should find that you are able to effectively resolve any conflicts that arise in the office before they escalate to the point where they damage your company’s bottom line.
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