Interpersonal conflict is a fact of life and can arise in almost any sphere, from organisations through to personal relationships.Learning to resolve it effectively, in a way that does not increase your stress levels, is therefore important for everyone.
One model to use is ‘ what you want done’, but for more information, and ideas for developing your assertiveness, see our Assertiveness section.
It is also helpful to think about how you communicate about the situation.
However, it requires input of time from those involved to work through the difficulties, and find a way to solve the problem that is agreeable to all.
This may be hard work, especially if the positions have already become entrenched, but it is also likely to be the best possible starting point early in a conflict situation. Compromise or Negotiation This is likely to result in a better result than win/lose, but it’s not quite win/win. Both parties give up something in favour of an agreed mid-point solution.
Emotions are never good or bad, but simply appropriate or inappropriate.
A useful skill in managing conflict is to be able to help others recognise when particular emotions are inappropriate, and when it is likely to be fine to express them.
As our page Transactional Analysis makes clear, a win-win situation is always going to be better for everyone.
It should therefore be clear that some strategies will be significantly more successful in the longer term. Compete or Fight This is the classic win/lose situation, where the strength and power of one person wins the conflict.
Check out our page on Active Listening for more information.
It is also helpful to understand and recognise emotion in both yourself and others.