9 Tips To Effectively Resolve Workplace Conflict


Every workplace is susceptible to conflicts. These can stem from disagreements among coworkers, contrasting views among managers, or miscommunications between staff members. Such conflicts, if unchecked, can adversely affect an organization’s productivity and success. Yet, it’s crucial to realize that these very conflicts can pave the way for progress and constructive transformation.

By resolving conflicts effectively, you can create a more positive work environment, build stronger relationships, and increase productivity. That said, here are nine effective tips to help you resolve workplace conflicts and turn them into opportunities for growth and development.

1. Identify The Root Cause Of The Conflict

The first step in settling conflicts is to determine the root cause of the problem. Often, disputes arise due to misunderstandings, miscommunications, or differences in opinions. First, you’ll need to understand the underlying issues to address the conflict effectively.

So, talk to the parties involved and listen to their perspectives without judgment. Encourage them to express their concerns and feelings to better understand the situation. You can take the discussion to your workplace mediation room for effective communication. That way, the discussion will only be between you and the parties involved.

Letting other employees jump into the debate while picking sides will only worsen the conflict and make it harder for you to identify its root cause. Thus, as much as possible, resolving conflict should be done privately in the mediation room with the involved employees. If you don’t have a mediation room in your workplace yet, you can find nearby workspaces that may offer mediation rooms that meet your needs.

 2. Communicate Clearly And Respectfully

Clear and respectful communication is critical in resolving workplace conflicts. When communicating with the parties involved, be clear and concise in your message. Use active listening skills to understand their point of view and acknowledge their feelings. Avoid using accusatory language or blaming anyone for the conflict. Instead, focus on finding a resolution that benefits everyone involved.

3. Keep Emotions In Check

Sometimes, it’s easy to get emotionally swayed when the tension and the emotions during conflict are high and extreme. But as the middle person, you must keep your emotions in check. Avoid getting defensive or angry, as this will only escalate the situation.

Instead, stay calm and composed, and try to see the situation from both perspectives. By keeping your emotions in check, you can communicate more effectively and find a solution that works for everyone.

4. Focus On The Issue, Not The Person


One thing that worsens workplace conflicts is when people make it more about the person than the problem itself. As much as possible, avoid making personal attacks or criticizing the other person’s character. Otherwise, you’re only fueling the conflict instead of resolving it.

So, focus on the problem and work together to find a solution. By separating the issue from the person, you can maintain a professional and respectful environment.

5. Find Common Ground

After both parties have calmed down and expressed their sides, it’s time to find common ground. Look for areas of agreement between the parties involved and build on them. Encourage them to focus on their shared goals and interests rather than their differences.

Perhaps they were arguing about a particular project, and while they had the same goal in mind, they had different ideas on how to achieve it, thus resulting in conflict. You can focus on that one thing they have in common (or the shared goal) and expand it. Finding common ground can create a win-win situation where everyone feels heard and valued.

6. Use Positive Language

Positive language can be a powerful tool in resolving workplace conflicts. Use words that are constructive and solution-focused rather than negative or accusatory. For example, instead of saying, ‘You’re not doing your job properly,’ try saying, ‘Let’s work together and think of a solution that meets everyone’s needs.’ Using and promoting positive language can create a more collaborative environment and a positive work culture, essential for your employees’ well-being.

7. Brainstorm Solutions

At this point, you can start brainstorming for solutions. Encourage both parties to generate ideas to resolve the conflict and be open-minded to all suggestions, even if they seem unconventional or unrealistic. The goal here is to provide them with a safe environment where they can share their opinions and ideas without being judged or conflicted.

It’s also important to build on each other’s ideas and avoid criticizing or dismissing them immediately. Once they’ve placed all their ideas and solutions on the table, evaluate each solution objectively and choose the one that best addresses the underlying issues.

8. Take Action

Once you have a solution, you can develop a plan of action. This plan should include clear goals, responsibilities, and timelines, for each party involved. A well-defined plan can help ensure everyone is on the same page, moving forward towards a common goal.

It’s also essential to communicate the action plan to all parties involved. Ensure they understand what’s expected of them and how their contributions will help resolve the conflict. You can outline the goals and responsibilities to implement the action or solution effectively. Then, follow up regularly to assess progress and make any necessary adjustments.

9. Learn From The Conflict

Finally, it’s essential to learn from workplace conflicts and use them as opportunities for growth and development. Take the time to reflect on the situation and identify what you can do differently in the future. Use the conflict as a learning experience and apply the lessons learned to other work areas.

The Bottom Line

Effective conflict resolution requires communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and emotional intelligence. It’s essential to approach conflicts with an open mind, a willingness to listen, and a commitment to finding a resolution that works for everyone involved.

By following this article’s tips, you can become a more functional communicator and a more valuable member of your team. Whether you’re an employee or a manager, these tips can help you navigate workplace conflicts with confidence and professionalism.