Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Conflict Resolution Tips

Those times always come when we find ourselves in a conflict with a friend, a family member or a co-worker. People disagree with one another...that is one of the cold hard facts of life...and learning how to resolve a conflict can make life easier at work and at home.

Here are 6 tips to help to resolve conflicts as quickly and painlessly as possible:

1. Hold your temper. Be slow to become angry. Count to 100 if necessary or walk away and give yourself time to control your anger before you make a hasty reply. Anger is an unproductive emotion that will only prolong the conflict.

2. Avoid pointing out mistakes the other person made directly. No one likes to be criticized. Rather choose your words carefully and point out errors the other person has made indirectly. Samuel Butler said it best. "A person convinced against his will is of the same opinion still".

3. Look for common ground. Compromise is an art form. There is usually a way that everybody can come together on at least one point in a conflict and resolution of the conflict can be built on compromise.

4. Admit you mistakes. If you determine that you were wrong in a dispute, admit it. Eating crow is never very tasty but it's not as hard to swallow when it is fresh.

5. Lead by example. Admit your own mistakes before pointing out a similar mistake made by another person. We always learn more from our mistakes than from  anything we accidentally do right.

6. Mend your fences and do it as quickly as possible. Say you are sorry whether you are, at the moment, or not. Sometimes just a little time will resolve a conflict. This is a quote from the smartest woman I ever grandmother. "Don't let the sun set on a hard heart"...good advice.

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