How to handle conflict at work

At a workplace there will always be minor disagreements and differences of opinion. The way you handle conflict in the workplace can have a huge impact on how you are viewed as an employee. It can affect your entire career and it can say a lot about your character.

Conflict arises from differences, and when individuals come together in teams, their differences in terms of power, values, and attitudes contribute to the creation of conflict. You can’t win a conflict at work. Winning a conflict means getting the outcome ‘you’ want regardless of what the ‘other’ person wants. Since the underlying issue has not been solved, it will simply reappear later. Hence it is much better to resolve a conflict than win it. Unresolved conflicts make people unhappy at work and can result in antagonism, breakdown in communications, inefficient teams, stress and low productivity.

below Q&A session are answered by Amit ABnsal, CEO – PurpleLeap

dfee asked, amit, is there any thumb rule to avoid conflicts in the company
Amit Bansal answers, 1. Avoid Gossip. 2. Listen deeply. 3. Appreciate People Genuinely. 4. Don’t criticize people without evidence and criticize (if you have to) their action and not their personality. 5. Let people make mistakes, but be prepared for them (if you are in a leadership position), 6. Understand the value system of your team (what they believe in). 7. Sensitise other team members about the importance of values. These are some thumb rules. Good Luck

sethu asked, how to handle the boss who is not listening us, and he insist the way he wants?
Amit Bansal answers, Sometimes, it takes time for the boss to feel confident in his/her team’s ability to contribute. This typically emerges from the managerial style. One need not be put off by it, give it some, make notes of when he accepts certain ideas, in fact, one can also ask him of an example of work which he really liked and why, that will give you some clues…

dfee asked, amit ji, How to handle a colleague, Who is not treating everybody in a same manner and making unnecessary comments on other employees in the company
Amit Bansal answers, If one cannot avoid, you will have to learn to divert attention, find out what the colleague likes (cricket, etc) and bring out topics whenever you sense he/she is making ‘unnecessary’ comments

poi asked, hi. how to deal with sensitive colleagues to avoid conflict
Amit Bansal answers, First Step is to Build rapport with sensitive colleagues, then it becomes easier to give them feedback (if needed). Know what ticks them off, avoid it where possible. For example some are very sensitive when it comes to caste, religion, etc. Avoid these topics alltogether in those lunch sessions, then develop respect for you and will be more open to feedback

rajesh j asked, my boss never praise for my work . he ask me to fulfil all the pending work . He is aware that only I can do this. But I expect he should give me a reward may in the form of promotion or praise. But he will never do that. What should i do
Amit Bansal answers, Step 1: Prepare a summary of your work, Step 2: Present it Step 3: See if you can involve other stakeholders (take your boss’s permission)

Sreejit asked, Dear Sir…. I am working in a banking sector in technology dept. Our group has been entitled with large scale projects which needs proper planning and forecasting. My boss doesn’t align the work properly and at times assign the same task to two people. Further he blames the team members in case of deadlines are not met due to his lack of decission making and approvals. Further he spends lot of time in discussing the same thing with other seniors but does not update us on what is required from us. In case anything is required from me, he just tells single line requirement and further we needs to take it ahead and in case of any help or support is required he suggests to check with other team members or seniors and never gives a solution. This is going on since last 2.5 yrs with situation going from bad to worse. Kindly guide, is it worth continuing under his leadership.
Amit Bansal answers, From what you share, it appears poor managerial skills are being used, whether it is worth to continue to not is a larger question, you may to look at IJPs (internal job postings) before you make a strong move…Good luck

sneha asked, Amit ji, can you please share your experience on how to avoid conflicts and do better neogitiation…
Amit Bansal answers, 1. Decide on your starting position & your “bottom line,” 2. Consider the objectives & motivation of the other party. 3. Prepare for the meeting by determining your own motives and objectives: Why are you negotiating? What do you expect to gain and why is it important to you? What do you think you will have to offer to achieve this? 4. Be prepared with information, facts, …

AmitB asked, Dear Sir, What is the solution if your boss is someone who likes to micro manage, a control freak who always calls meetings where he is asking everyone’s opinions but finally he decides what needs to be done. Also – pls dont give gyaan answers.. a real solution will be appreciated
Amit Bansal answers, Gyaan is important. The gyaan here is psychology and management styles. If one does not understands how decisions are taken then this dilemma can take place. Maybe there is patter he is using in taking decision. He is obviously not a consensus type or collaborative type. Read/research more and make daily notes, see how you react whenever you are being ‘micromanaged’, one needs to become a student of behavior and one needs to stop looking for ‘fomulas’

nilesh asked, hi sir my manager does not pass any work to the team. he completes the same and then call on saturdays and sundays to complete the same. till the time he is not through he keeps us busy in some petty matters
Amit Bansal answers, Try and address it in your team meeting, it will require courage, but it seem important

DEb asked, I have a total exp of 10 years and recently have been associated with a blue chip company for a little over 2.5 years, offlate there have been some appraisal related conflicts, favoritism shown by my line manager to others, my growth has been not that great.. my peers tell me since it is a big company, all these are part and parcel…. I am seriously considering leaving my company because of all this and join a small company…. what do you suggest, should I stick on for another 2-3 years with low growth and disinterested boss just for the sake of stability or move on.
Amit Bansal answers, Are you linking growth with learning or you relating to only financial growth, because if you are learning well day to day then it might have long term rewards, but if you are looking at short-term growth then the strategy might be as you have thought of…

Pritpal asked, How to Avoid arguments at workplace?
Amit Bansal answers, See if all argue or is it only your team. If all then it is a culture which has been set as a precedent.

prasad asked, My boss expects me to do menial tasks like photocopying his papers. I am a senior person (A Manager myself) in organization and this seems demeaning to me. How to tackle it?
Amit Bansal answers, This seems like a culture issue, see around to see if a lot of managers are doing what you doing or you are an exception, If you are the only one then you will have to creatively avoid the task

dipa asked, sir, my boss does not involve me in any productive activity and also harasses me over trivial issues. this is causing stress. how do i handle??
Amit Bansal answers, You want to make a list of the issues he assigns you. Check if there is a pattern and check if is coming because of what you think/do

sushil asked, hi amitji, i just want you to educate me on resolving conflict of interest with our boss.where he dictates his views and wants everybody to follow it.
Amit Bansal answers, It is difficult skill to question your boss, it comes with experience and skill, you may to reflect and think of a strategy of how you will do this. One way is to extrapolate some events if you do as he says. Then question if he is ok with those results.

sam asked, I am joining a new co. they have take a months time to issue me a offer letter even though it was promised that it will be done in 2 to 3 days. consider all the pros & cons, still I feel insecure to join the co. although pay package and position is good.
Amit Bansal answers, Speak to HR, your manager, and consult a senior whom you are trust and discuss the matter further…

mak asked, I know it is important to have diversity in your team and conflicts are bound to happen. How do we make sure that conflicts at some point helps the team to achieve a common goal ?
Amit Bansal answers, It is important to check the rapport between the team members, if it is poor then achieving a common goal might be difficult…btw conflict is an important part of developing as a team, it is how you manage the period of conflict…

war asked, sir , i am working in spare parts trading company , my vice president is corrupt and taking commission from supplier , not allowing me work with genuine good price suppliers , how can i inform MD of my company ?
Amit Bansal answers, You may want to take internal advise here. It appears like a critical issue, which might affect the business. You are indicating that action is important here.

MGS asked, How to handle very stubborn & egoistic person,who usually starts the conflict
Amit Bansal answers, You may to read some strategies, for example, How to ‘Win Friends and Influence People’, gives you some time tested ideas. Genuine listening might help the ego to break down. Also one has to examine whether one is also responsible for the ego of the other person to build up…

water asked, Hi SIr, I have been working with an comapny for more than 10 years now…. Sir now a days it seems that the boss does not like my work and he is not replying to any of my emails.. He is giving half information to me for any project and is not making his inentions clear on the projects… Sir please advice what I sould do ?
Amit Bansal answers, It is difficult to predict, how things might unfold, you may need to have a discussion with him. You will need to bring out in the open what assumptions he has made about you. This might simply involve asking for feedback. Risky but it may be worth trying. Recommend that you consult somebody in office before you do that.

sam asked, Hi Amit, my performance i excellent, but just because of my cast my boss always praises my colleague, their relationship is like husband wife, I feel left out out and really dont like to middle in them
Amit Bansal answers, The main question in today’s discussion can be: is it causing conflict or are you a negotiator between the two of them, if you are then that is something you should be aware of…

razz asked, Hi Amit, my manage and leads are giving more work. they always wants to complete work ahead of time. for this we are working very late night upto 10pm sometimes 11pm. Please suggest me how to get out of this issue
Amit Bansal answers, Are you also seeing how you are dividing your tasks against the time of the day? Morning, afternoon and evening have different impacts on our productivity. You may need to map this first.


Chat Date: April 10, 2013


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