Conflict Management and Motivational Methods

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Effective management of workplace conflict, communication, and employee motivation are the hallmarks of great leadership and corporate culture. Zappos is an apparel retailer based in Las Vegas that needs to implement practices to create a strategic motivational environment, enhance collaboration within teams, and resolve disputes. Essential skills to create this organizational culture are imparted during workshops. As an organizer of an upcoming leadership training with 100 participants, I have partnered with Zappos’ human resources manager to coordinate the event. This paper describes the key leadership trait that can assist in managing conflict, a tool or strategy a leader can adopt for improving communication within the organization, and some methods for motivating employees and improving behaviors within the workplace.

Leadership Traits That Help Manage Conflict

Conflict is inevitable in workplace contexts, and leaders must learn to resolve issues that may impact teamwork and collaboration. Dealing with dispute situations requires certain leadership traits. First, a leader needs to be accommodative. This human skill is particularly useful when an individual admits to being in the wrong and accepts a better solution (Kramer & Bisel, 2016). Being accommodative to the other person’s view is a good gesture and builds social credits for use in subsequent conflict situations. This trait is also useful when a leader wants to allow the team to grow, learn from individual mistakes, and establish harmonious working relationships.

Second, active listening is an essential human skill for resolving workplace conflicts. Through constructive feedback and nonverbal cues such as eye contact, an understanding of the other party is demonstrated, forming a foundation for mutual decisions and conflict resolution (Kramer & Bisel, 2016). An active listener has effective oral interpersonal communication skills. He or she is concise and clear in his statements and works with the other party to understand his or her views. Third, neutrality is essential in conflict situations. The leader must not appear to be partial or vouching for specific interests.

Strategies to Improve Communication in the Workplace

Effective workplace communication is essential to an organization. Training Zappos employees in this area will empower them to be productive and efficient. Various approaches can be used to improve communication. The first strategy that leaders can use to communicate effectively in the workplace is clarifying ideas before passing them on. The key message must reflect the attitudes and needs of the communication recipients and implementers (Kramer & Bisel, 2016). Therefore, clear content can be more easily understood than complex, ambiguous memos. The second strategy is reviewing the purpose of each communication to align it with the intended objectives. According to Kramer and Bisel (2016), a message may aim to “provide information, initiate action, and alter the recipient’s attitudes” (p. 174). Therefore, leaders must adapt their language and tone to the specific objective.

The third strategy is being considerate of the communication context. A key strategy is conforming the message to the expectations of the employees. Addressing anticipated problems or long-standing concerns will improve the effectiveness of a communique. A fourth approach is consulting key employees. This inclusive approach will ensure that the recipients embrace the central message because it embodies their opinions. A fifth important strategy is giving the audience an opportunity to ask questions or react to the content. The feedback will demonstrate the level of understanding of the message conveyed.

Methods for Motivating Employees and Improving Employee Behavior

A highly motivated staff is productive, committed, and innovative. Employee motivation not only contributes to performance improvement, but it also creates an ethical workplace characterized by trust and positive behavior (Kramer & Bisel, 2016). Leaders can motivate staff and encourage actions centered on strong ethics in three ways: improving working conditions, providing better pay and benefits, and recognizing high-performing individuals. First, a good workplace environment that includes adequate rest, work-life balance, and optimal workloads can boost the passion and enthusiasm of workers (Kramer & Bisel, 2016). Additionally, staff involvement in decision-making can also motivate employees to work harder to realize mutual goals.

Second, competitive pay and benefits can serve as extrinsic motivating factors in workplace contexts. Providing full medical insurance and paid vacations will increase individual productivity and foster trust and loyalty in the organization (Kramer & Bisel, 2016). Predictable work schedules and fair treatment are other critical extrinsic motivators. Third, the recognition of high-performing staff is another method leader can use to motivate employees. Promotion to higher cadres and salary raises are powerful tools for incentivizing workers.


An effective organizational leader is accommodative, receptive, and exhibits active listening, accountability, and neutrality traits. These human skills are useful for successfully managing conflicts and maintaining harmony among workers in the workplace environment. A raft of strategies that can be employed by leaders to improve communication includes classifying ideas before passing them to the recipients, examining the objective of the message, considering the context, consulting with others, and making follow-ups. Improving the working conditions, providing prompt pay and benefits, and recognizing employees all help to motivate them and boost their zeal and performance.


Kramer, M. W., & Bisel, R. S. (2016). Organizational communication. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

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