When working in a team, conflicts often arise which are usually unavoidable. Besides, the differences among co-workers can create extreme tension within a team. Well, to be precise, the differences among them don’t always result in a bad thing, as sometimes some healthy, constructive criticism can lead to an improvement in their performance. It also helps them figure out solutions for tough problems.

Depending upon the friendliness in a team, there will be different responses if a conflict arises. For example, the co-workers may neglect the issue, get passive aggressive with each other or put the blame on other personnel. But, if you find that your workplace is getting seriously affected by disputes, then below we have mentioned some ways to help you resolve the same.

Accepting the conflict
Neglecting issues can save someone’s feelings from getting hurt in the short run, but if this continues you will be less likely to work with that person on future projects and the anger built up overtime may eventually lead into arguments. So, avoid such resentment build-ups by solving the issue the moment it arises and let your colleague know that you disagree with the course of action they chose. This may not sound pleasant, but discussing such small disagreements in open can help put a stop to them arising in the near future. Don’t let an argument among co-workers raise your office temperature, your designer radiator is already doing just that.

Wait and cool down
Before you decide to take an action, wait for a minute and avoid the following negative behaviours:

  • Insults
  • Pointing fingers
  • Complaining behind the back
  • Defensive attitude
  • Making assumptions
  • Rigid demands and ultimatums
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Showing such harmful behaviours may cause your colleagues to not trust you and view your argument as futile. Rather than using such dishonest methods, go to the source of conflict and discuss your issues logically. This will help you gain a stand in the workplace.

Become a good listener
When a conflict arises, let everybody share their opinion truthfully by not being under any pressure. You can prevent miscommunication by allowing each team member to speak for themselves and clear up their position. As they express their opinions, it might bring in more understanding among team members. Tell everyone to be a good listener while someone is expressing their opinions. Avoid jumping to conclusions and pay keen attention to the points they raise.

List assumptions and facts
After every team member had their chance to voice their opinions, list out the assumptions and facts that were made. Writing down such one sided opinions of arguments can later make things clearer to the team and shows which side lacks in reasoning. Getting this done in front of the group prevents possible favouritism or irrational arguments occurring in the future among team members.

Breaking alliances
A lot of times, workplace friendship blinds people and clouds judgment among others. Colleagues might feel that they have to agree with each other, because if they don’t they might lose their friendship. So, when you are handling difficult issues, break up these alliances and clarify the final team positions. By doing so, you can avoid the favouritism behaviour among team members and allow everyone to peruse their opinions free of any conflicts.

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Celebrate again as a team
It is important that everybody’s contributions are acknowledged in front of the team itself. This will make every member feel good, as they’ve worked towards a solution leading the entire team to become more unified of their cohesive victory. This “celebration” can be anything from a congratulatory email, extra tea time in canteen or even corporate days out as a reward. Your team will bond more if you recognise their success by handling out arguments.

If handled properly, constructive conflicts can bring a team closer. To build a strong team, it is necessary that everyone appreciates and respects their co-workers’ opinions. To build a healthy environment among your team, resolve conflicts as soon as they arise in a quick and proficient manner. Also, to become an effective team member, it is vital that everybody remains open to different beliefs and ideas, and learns to view conflicts from a co-worker’s perspective.

We hope the above given tips help you to get to grips with workplace disputes and maintain that friendly environment you desire.