A large part of the workflow for almost any profession involves interacting with other people. Unfortunately, this communication is not always successful due to the difficulties in finding mutual understanding. Although there can be many reasons for the emergence of conflicts, several factors and techniques can be used in almost any circumstance. The combination of interpersonal skills, management skills, and specific strategies can help resolve a conflict situation quickly and effectively. This paper aims to reflect on knowledge of resolving conflict and analyze it in the context of a problem from personal experience.
Thanks to the course I have taken, I can divide the conflict resolution process into several stages. Firstly, for the practical solution of interpersonal problems that can arise both in the workplace and during regular communication, some preparatory work is required. It consists of developing skills that should then be applied in similar situations. These skills should be divided into two categories: interpersonal and managerial. The first group includes skills related directly to interaction with other people, such as working in a team and positioning oneself in a society – self-esteem and self-confidence (Dubrin, 2015). To be able to resolve conflicts effectively, both components are needed. Even if a person knows how to work in a team and adapt to others’ needs, the lack of authority and self-confidence will not effectively defend their position. Management skills are focused on teamwork and human resource management and include, for example, the ability to find a compromise and to collaborate with other people (Dubrin, 2015). Besides, a person needs to understand when they need to be softer and give in or push and force colleagues to complete the necessary task.
The combination of these skills already allows us to logically and analytically resolve many conflict situations. If people understand cultural, ethnic, and physical differences between people and accept the possibility of having a different perspective, then they are ready to resolve difficult moments. The more communication experience a person has in a particular team, the more effectively these skills can be applied. In the end, it is much easier to negotiate and find a compromise with comrades with whom a person has been working for more than one year.
However, there are non-standard situations or circumstances in which it is necessary to resolve the conflict without any preparation. Several methods have been developed to adequately react at such a moment, navigate, and produce an action plan. These step-by-step techniques allow following practiced steps to respond to stressful moments in the workplace (Dubrin, 2015). These include, for example, overcoming the defensive reaction, which is especially important for determining the real causes of the problem, as well as accepting and resolving tension. Consequently, such practices have direct practical application in cases where it is necessary to resolve a complicated situation or there is no detailed information about each of the parties.
The knowledge described above could have helped to more successfully resolve some of the conflict situations in my previous workplace. When I worked as a consultant for an intercom installation company, I often had to deal with residents’ dissatisfaction. Most of the situations were resolved through a detailed explanation of the case; however, one of the meetings turned into a real conflict. Unfortunately, a misunderstanding arose because due to an error in the office, not all papers and not all information were transferred to the inhabitants in advance. Therefore, my actions at this facility caused many questions. The residents wanted to know by what right the equipment was replaced.
The problem was their intensely aggressive nature and attempts to pressure me as the only person representing the company at the moment. Unfortunately, I did not have enough self-confidence to adequately and effectively resist such pressure at that time. However, if I had current knowledge, I would be able to more accurately analyze the situation, use precise questions to determine the specific reason for the dissatisfaction, and then offer cooperation to the tenants. Besides, I could have used the tactic of accepting tension instead of defensively. In this case, the residents would not find a victim to splash out their negativity since they would have met with reasoned answers.
I did not have enough experience and knowledge in this area to resolve the situation so effectively. However, I have taken specific steps to smooth out the conflict and determine the problem. I have tried to clarify the reasons for the dissatisfaction, which were the lack of proper information. Besides, I figured out the desired solution for the residents, which could not be fully implemented by the company. Thus, I had to try to find a compromise that would satisfy both sides – both me as an employee and them as an injured party. However, there were too many barriers on the way to this goal, both legal and personal. Ultimately, the only way to resolve this conflict was to include the authorities in the discussion through a phone call. Only by attracting a more authoritative and competent person could this incident be resolved.
Thus, the course taken included a lot of materials related to conflict resolution. This information focuses on the importance of developing a person’s interpersonal and managerial skills. It is also necessary to build knowledge and study techniques that allow navigating situations more quickly and efficiently, without wasting time on additional analysis. Such theories make it possible to apply well-established steps to eliminate conflict, which is especially important in the workplace, where conflicts can occur frequently, and there is little time to resolve them.
Dubrin, A. J. (2015). Human relations: Interpersonal job-oriented skills (12th ed.). Pearson.