Workplace conflict is a challenge that every manager should know how to handle. There’s no way to completely escape it. But reducing workplace conflict can be better than resolving it. There is a need to understand that conflict may not necessarily arise from a clash of interest between employees. Addressing other aspects that may affect employees’ perception about their jobs is a great move on how to reduce workplace conflict. Here are methods to reduce conflict in the workplace. The following list of strategies on how to reduce workplace conflict includes proactive steps that help to resolve conflicts before they can get to managers while also discouraging conflict among employees.
Office goals and priorities must be clear
Conflicts arise due to differences in priorities, goals, values, and methods. There’s no way to harmonize the strength of your employees without making sure that every member clearly understands your goals and priorities. This discourages workplace conflict by making sure that each member of your team is on the same page and has a common goal, plan, priority, and objective.
Support positive work relationship
Giving your employees a chance to know themselves better will help them to become more comfortable with each other. You can achieve this by creating a platform that will provide a continuous social interaction, assigning tasks that require staff interaction and by providing opportunities for cross-training.
Provide conflict resolution training
Managers can reduce workplace conflict longevity, manifestation, and impact by helping their employees to develop skills on how to resolve workplace conflicts and as well as handle conflict in their personal lives. The knowledge will help to prevent conflict escalation, give your employees confidence in their ability to deal with conflicts while also limiting them from being a distraction.
Build strong communication channels
Communication is a major factor in how to reduce workplace conflict. Aside from social platforms, there should be problem-solving and informational meetings where employees interact better. This can be established using varied communication tools like facial discussions, texting, email, bulletin boards, online meetings, etc.
Build a participatory environment
Employees lacking channels to air their concerns or ideas are likely to indirectly release the energy through conflicts. While some organizations are proud to say they encourage employee feedback, programs necessary to protect their employees from retribution are missing. A participatory environment must overcome employee silence, cherish employee involvement programs, suggestion systems, and reward workers for their participation. This point has over time proven to be one of the most effective methods to reduce conflict and promote general performance.
Avoid preferential treatments
You can’t prevent workplace conflict if you treat the employees differently. Managers guilty of preferential treatment lack the credentials to discourage workplace conflict, the attitude alone can create conflict situations. This can be avoided by simply treating all your employees fairly. Treating every worker nice will allow you to communicate positively and to influence each of them with a motivating environment.
Other strategies on how to reduce workplace conflict may include training team leaders on conflict mediation, encouraging team building activities, and consulting third-party conflict mediation. The essence of all the proactive methods of reducing conflict is to ensure that employees are not by any means facing pressure at work.