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Manage Conflict among Employees

Problems on the Team: A Mini Case Study – Part IIConflict is inevitable in the workplace. Anytime you have more than one person you are going to have conflict. Just because it is inevitable, however, doesn’t mean it should be managed. When conflict is not managed it just grows and causes:

  • Decreased productivity
  • Increased stress
  • Increased employee turnover
  • Decreased employee engagement/job motivation

Conflict erodes trust within the organization and, over time, impacts the customers.

Conflict can be managed by having processes and procedures in place for handling it when it arises. Through a formal process, employees have a way to manage a conflict with another employee.

By getting to know their employees and checking in regularly with employees, such as in one-on-one or team meetings, managers will see issues early on before they become full blown conflicts that have a negative impact within the group, the department, division or organization.

Managers should encourage employees to talk with them if they are in a conflict with another, or, to bring the matter to Human Resources if they feel more comfortable doing so (or if the conflict is with the manager.)

When a conflict is determined, the manager should work to analyze why the conflict exists – direct and indirect causes – so that a plan to manage the conflict can be developed. Conflicts can only be resolved when it is understood why it exists in the first place.

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