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Submitted by US101 on


Nice work keeping this topic to one podcast. Here's what I got out of it -
Bottom Line Up Front[/b]
1. Use the feedback model regarding their ineffective conflict behavior and then follow-up in your next 1-on-1.
2. Don't bring the two direct reports together at the same time in your office.

[b]Why We Get it Wrong[/b]

• We focus on the conflict or drama
• We make it too personal. It’s about the behavior. People aren’t bad. They’re good people engaging in ineffective behavior.
• We punish people for it
• We don’t see ourselves making this mistakes
How to Do it Right[/b]

Decide to act or not to act. Don’t act-
o If it’s a minor conflict
o If doesn’t involve your high performers
o If it’s not a recurring problem

If you do act, frame your view of the conflict
o People
“I think you’re good member of team. I care about AND this behavior is ineffective. What can you do about it?”

o Feedback about the conflict behavior
“When you don’t reply to Sally’s email she thinks you don’t want to work with her, that you’ve checked out of this project.

o Apologies
The fastest way to defuse a conflict.
o If you ask people, “What can you do differently?” Most people will say, “I need to apologize.”
o “I consider this the problem resolved.”
o The work
Follow-up in you’re our next 1-on-1[/b]
“Hey last week you and Sally got into. You both said you would apologize. What’s the status?”

ctomasi's picture

Wow, those look EXACTLY like my notes. I should have just waited and someone would have posted them here... :-)

Thanks Jon!

Seriously, I always knew I was one of the worst people at conflict resolution. I'm in the middle of a family of 9. I saw conflict and went in the other direction. Using this information from the cast is invaluable. It may be a little awkward and mechanical for me at first, but much like the performance reviews, I'm sure I'll hear that voice that sounds a lot like Mark Horstman whispering in my ear and everything will come out fine.

US101's picture
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Chuck - Ha! Great minds think alike. I hate conflict too. One thing that has helped me is to think in terms of "Pinch vs. Crunch." When I feel the pinch of a conflict I tell myself do something now before I feel the "crunch."