How to Resolve conflicts with colleagues

Wherever work is done, there is a dispute . Whether as a discussion or as pressure equalization - it only becomes dangerous when your own dissatisfaction boils up to anger and a factual solution can no longer be found. Not infrequently, there are then serious derailments that permanently damage the personal image and further cooperation. Silence, swallowing and repression are just as wrong in the case of smoldering conflicts as lack of self-control . First the good news: Everybody can argue. Now the bad: Few can do it right. For a culture of debate must first be learned. How to resolve conflicts with colleagues ...

Conflicts: a definition and different types
Definition conflicts by definition, conflict is a state of tension in which two or more interdependent parties vigorously seek to realize seemingly or actually incompatible action plans while being aware of their opposition.

The symptoms of conflict can be manifold. Once we experience hostility and aggressiveness manifesting in verbal attacks or evil looks. Then there are colleagues who just switch off and only push service to rule - annoying, if you just need someone to help them.

relationship conflicts
Everyone knows that. Where we meet other people, antipathies can arise, which complicate all being together, although often no rational reason can be recognized. Mostly it begins quite subliminally, subtle attacks are started and shot like little arrows. What was initially a purely factual difference is now personified and escalated over time.

communication conflicts
We can not not communicate. Even the ignorance remains a reaction to the request of the counterpart. Another complicating factor is that we communicate on different levels (facial expressions, gestures). Misunderstandings quickly mutate into communication conflicts if they are not corrected directly. At the organizational level, communication conflicts can develop when, for example, an employee signals resistance because his group did not involve him in the decision-making process and he was unable to shape the decision.

role conflicts
Most people take on different roles in a group. Expectations are expressed and unspoken put to the individual. But that does not necessarily have to be those drawers in which one likes to see oneself. Accordingly, the different roles may prevent individuals from pursuing their personal goals .

property disputes
Here, opposing opinions and disagreements prevail over one thing. There are different ideas about which goal should be achieved or there are different solutions in the room, but they can not be combined. At least not at first sight.

conflicts of values
These occur, for example, in different ways of working. The one prefers clearly regulated processes, the other prefers spontaneous; the one categorically excludes unfair methods, for the other they are only means to an end.

power struggles
Two departments are to be merged for cost reasons. Both former department heads do not want to lose influence. Zack - already the power conflict is programmed.

distributional conflicts
Here, different views on how the available resources should be distributed dominate. Who gets the company car? Who the corner office? Who the new assistants?

11 safe ways to argue with colleagues
Despite teambulding, team events and team spirit conflicts can not be prevented. An ill-considered remark, a bad day and the argument is programmed. That's why it helps to be aware of what behaviors you are conjuring up conflicts.

interference
One of the safest ways to make your colleagues go white: Get involved in every conversation and every project. Irrespective of the topic, you should always have good advice, a tip or the better specialist knowledge available - and give it to the unsolicited. Nerves guaranteed.

half-truths
No, you should not lie to your teammates, it's enough if you omit some of the truth. For example, just tell colleague A that colleague B has criticized his project on some points. That he has found words of praise, however, let go - and look relaxed, what happens.

Requirements
Good teams usually make many decisions together. This is your chance to stir up trouble. Simply introduce new directions and rules without even beginning to discuss them. The effect is likely to be amazing.

opportunism
It's even easier: take the concerns of your colleagues seriously and agree with them. If you always do that and agree with each other's opinion - even contradictory ones - this will quickly lead to confusion and conflicts in the team. If it comes to pronunciation, you should rather be sick.

absenteeism
Speaking of illness: If you want to disrupt the mood in the team sustainable, just sign up sick in a hot project phase just before an important deadline . Ideally, you then ensure that your tasks are poorly documented and you are not available. Lousy mood guaranteed.

unreliability
You want to drive colleagues to the brink of desperation? Then you promise to complete important tasks - and do nothing. When the deadline approaches and the colleague relies on your results, the fun starts for everyone involved.

Feedback
You can also frustrate your colleagues by actively collecting feedback. Gather the feedback , pretend to be serious - and ignore all ideas. It will not be long before frustration grows.

vacation
Vacation planning can be a controversial topic even in well-functioning teams. You can optimally use these sore points by simply entering your holiday in front of everyone else or, even better, treating the holiday wishes of individual colleagues without any reason and explanation.

premiums
Bonus systems can work wonders for employee motivation. However, if you manage to earn Team Rewards only for individual team members, you have found a perfect way to sustainably damage your team spirit.

recognition
The same applies to the recognition of services or suggestions for improvement. Here focus on individual employees - although the performance was provided by the team - conflicts are programmed.

rating
An optimal way to pit even well-rehearsed teams into trouble: announce that all team members are judged and compared individually. Depend on this assessment then still premiums or allowances, the atmosphere in the team should poison quickly.

Three tips for better quarreling
Three tips for better quarrelingAsk! Many conflicts escalate, because the dispute bombards themselves first with allegations: "You telephone much too loud!" It is better to ask questions: "Have you noticed that you speak very loudly on the phone?" Who asks correctly, directs the conversation while avoiding provocation. Conversely, respond to such accusations never offended, but also with questions: "What do you mean by that?"
Choice of words! In fact, men argue differently than women. As He juxtaposes facts in His sentences, She tries to create harmony with her words. If the man does not respond, she feels rejected and the dispute escalates. The same applies to generalizations à la "This is total idiocy!" Such formulations are cowardly attacks that only stoke the dispute. Rather, formulate specifically and as an I-message: "In this situation I felt that way ..."
About hearing! Of course, you should listen carefully to your counterpart to signal that you take the other person seriously. The pro himself is accused of allegations or insinuations, even if they are unjustified, but ignores pure taunts, so keeps the reins in hand and proves greatness. The reverse is true: Disrespect disqualifies any discussant. And irony or sarcasm always have a destructive effect on the atmosphere of conversation.

The conflict discussion as a solution
Conflict Management Conflict Phases Dialog Dispute Resolution Methods Exercises
Once it has come to a fight, one inevitably faces the challenges of finding a way to get along again. Because in the job you can usually not or difficult to avoid. At some point you are forced to work together again. Only the clarifying conversation helps . What you should keep in mind so that a pronunciation is possible:

If it comes to pronunciation, the atmosphere comes first. Strive always and always for objectivity. Never start with anger in the stomach . A time interval to the shutter often helps, but the conversation should not be delayed too long. In technical jargon, this first approximation is the contact phase .
It is followed by the attention phase : If a good atmosphere of conversation is found, you should clarify together how you imagine the conversation. All participants should agree that they want to work together to find a solution. If you do not want to, you can save yourself the whole action.
If all agree, you should tell each other in turn their interpretation of the conflict: how did this happen? What made the thing escalate? Incidentally, charming is in this case to start yourself, then the version of the other is last in the room, which gives him a better feeling. By the way, there should not be any discussion about the perspectives at this point, because that only leads to a quarrel! Rather, the commonalities of the positions and the differences should be worked out. The disagreements are processed in the next step in sequence.
Namely now, in the interview phase : Now solutions are sought for each issue. These proposals are then assessed on the basis of whether they are feasible and acceptable to all parties. The interlocutors agree on precisely these solutions and agree on when to talk about the success or failure of the implementation.
At the end of the conversation, all solutions are repeated and their acceptance is reviewed and agreed upon by both parties ( decision phase ).
Colleagues of horror
grumbler
Something is never good enough, they always find fault. Because they have to endure so many terrible things, their suffering in the imperfection of the world is crying out to heaven. Occasionally, they harshly communicate their suffering and incomprehension to the environment. Mostly, they are just grumbling to themselves. But even when they are silent, their grief of remorse speaks volumes: Look, everyone, I do not have it easy!

smart aleck
No matter what you say, the bourgeois interrupts them and corrects them. If you show him a faulty job, he will gladly take the opportunity to patronize how to do it the next time. After all, he has eaten wisdom with spoons - and never misses an opportunity to show it and thus demonstrate his superiority. But that's just the basic form: The perfect bourgeois is angry with the stupidity of the world.

schemers
As soon as the colleague is out the door, the schemer starts: "Do you know what has recently shot him for a buck?" Then he does not leave a good hair on colleagues. He in turn remains unaware. For as soon as he comes in the door, the smile on the schemer's face goes on: "Well, how are you? Nice that you're here! It is always a pleasure to work with you! "

choleric
His head is constantly crimson, he is under power and seems to be bubbling. As soon as something does not suit him (and this happens constantly), he roars and beats. His tantrums are feared because he values ​​mice and keyboards as projectiles. Grace the one who dares to provoke his anger or just get in the way of him: he punishes who he punishes thoroughly - and makes sure that everyone knows it. After all, he has to make an example.

egocentric
The whole world revolves around him: If he wants to talk on the phone, nobody should rattle on the keyboard. If he has to work in peace, the others have to leave the room. But he does not do this out of domination or wickedness, but out of absolute self-centeredness: only when everything is as he imagines he can fulfill his duties. And finally, you have to take that into consideration.

Expert advice: tips for the most common office conflicts
office conflictsLet's say it the way it is: Nothing can spoil your enjoyment of work more than other people. Today, we are working ever longer, more and more globally, more and more connected - and that fuels countless conflicts . Most office workers spend more time talking more with their colleagues than with their family, know the workforce better than their neighbors, and are more vulnerable to the whims and fads of colleagues, their grudges and their intrigues . Three common conflicts and tips on how to handle them:

The problem
My office colleague is a real creep: loud, arrogant, advice-resistant. How do I get along with someone like that?

The expert advice
Margit Schönberger , author of several books on living together in the office ("Who has no need for enemies colleagues"):

There will be situations where the detractor is more responsive to criticism, for example, after a successful phone call. This is the moment for an open conversation about the problems that his nature causes you. However, your sentences should not start with "you have ... you do ... you annoy ..."! During the conversation, you should remain friendly and esteem to your counterpartsignal - even if you have to act! Only if this does not work, you can fight with harder bandages: For example, by holding the mirror up to him and also make a louder during one of his too loud phone calls. But be aware that this will initially escalate the situation. Such games cost nerves. Often, however, such characters can only be accepted by completely disconcerting them and confronting them directly. Or for gentler spirits: Hand over a small gift to the creep in the morning with the words: "Gifts should promote friendship. Maybe today we have a combat-free zone! "Or no gift:" Do not be surprised: Today I have my arrogant day, best you get out of my way. "Importantly, that you solve the problem yourself in the end and do not run upwards. Because that makes you look helpless and does not qualify them for higher tasks.

The problem
A colleague obviously wants my job - how do I deal with it?

The expert advice
Martin Wehrle , salary coach and textbook author ("The enemy in my office"):

The fact that several people are seeking the same position is a natural process - for example, when two group leaders compete for the vacant position of the head of department. In your case, the thing is different: it's not about a free chair, it's about your own. Your colleague wants to displace you. The key question is: how does he do this? Does he intervene in your area of ​​expertise? Does he drive you over meetings at meetings? Or does he make you and your work bad with the colleagues and the boss? The best way to defend against covert attacks is to talk. Ask him for a private interview. Talk to what you have observed. Add as you interpret your observation and what consequences you draw (that you do not like it!). But the courage to talk will prove you defensive. It is quite possible that you will put off your competitors. If he attacks you openly, say at meetings, you should pursue a triple strategy. First, do your job as well as possible and talk about your performance. If you shine with your work, how should it be possible to displace you? Second, counterattack attacks with harsh arguments by throwing your expertise into the balance. Thirdly, put a limit on the competitor in open attacks, with a touch of humor. If all else fails, look for a conflict conversation in the presence of the supervisor. It can not be in his interests to fight for a vacant position - as long as you do your job well.

The problem
I'm afraid I'm Chefs darling lately . The many praise and the great orders are good on the one hand. But colleagues are increasingly withdrawing ...

The expert advice
Tiemo Kracht , Managing Director of Personalberatung Kienbaum Executive Consultants:

In such a case, you should always exercise transparency and avoid creating projection screens into which colleagues can put something. If possible, the commissioned work and the cooperation with the boss should be recognizable and comprehensible. Second, strive for teamwork! Engage colleagues in the projects at the right place and make this teamwork or group success transparent to the boss. Especially in the case of a public praise from the boss, you should name all those involved in this assignment or project and express specific thanks. Thirdly, should your boss give you orders during a group meeting that, from your point of view, can be dealt with better and more quickly by colleagues with appropriate skills and experience, Make a concrete suggestion and delegate it cleverly. In this way, you constructively accept the sensitivities of your colleagues and gain respect and recognition. Fourthly: If you want to approach the boss with project proposals, you will work on these advances first in the team and introduce yourself as a group - this will not create a slime trail for you. The prerequisite for not losing integration in the circle of colleagues is communication. Stay in dialogue and do not let it subside in the context of a more intensive direct cooperation with the boss. Always remember: bosses change more often than employees. If the boss is gone, you are otherwise isolated at lightning speed. In this way, you constructively accept the sensitivities of your colleagues and gain respect and recognition. Fourthly: If you want to approach the boss with project proposals, you will work on these advances first in the team and introduce yourself as a group - this will not create a slime trail for you. The prerequisite for not losing integration in the circle of colleagues is communication. Stay in dialogue and do not let it subside in the context of a more intensive direct cooperation with the boss. Always remember: bosses change more often than employees. If the boss is gone, you are otherwise isolated at lightning speed. In this way, you constructively accept the sensitivities of your colleagues and gain respect and recognition. Fourthly: If you want to approach the boss with project proposals, you will work on these advances first in the team and introduce yourself as a group - this will not create a slime trail for you. The prerequisite for not losing integration in the circle of colleagues is communication. Stay in dialogue and do not let it subside in the context of a more intensive direct cooperation with the boss. Always remember: bosses change more often than employees. If the boss is gone, you are otherwise isolated at lightning speed. The prerequisite for not losing integration in the circle of colleagues is communication. Stay in dialogue and do not let it subside in the context of a more intensive direct cooperation with the boss. Always remember: bosses change more often than employees. If the boss is gone, you are otherwise isolated at lightning speed. The prerequisite for not losing integration in the circle of colleagues is communication. Stay in dialogue and do not let it subside in the context of a more intensive direct cooperation with the boss. Always remember: bosses change more often than employees. If the boss is gone, you are otherwise isolated at lightning speed.

Quarrel shortens life
Quarrel shortens lifeQuarrel is unhealthy. It causes stress , raises blood pressure and sometimes makes stomach ulcers. How dramatically frequent discussion but actually works, now shows a Danish study to Rikke Lund from the University of Copenhagen.

In various studies of 9875 men and women between the ages of 32 and 52 years, the researchers found that the mortality risk increased by two to three times in frequent quarrels. The health values ​​of the subjects worsened by the increased stress (and the release of various hormones), the increased blood pressure such that, for example, the probability of cardiovascular disease increased by 50 to 100 percent among those affected.

However, the researchers concede that this is not automatic. The skilled person would also speak here of a striking correlation and not causality. That means the probability of dying earlier increases. Whether it actually happens depends not least on your physical condition, your individual nerves and the regular balance (for example through sports and healthy nutrition).


How to save a broken working relationship
As in private life, there are people in the job, with whom one immediately understands each other. You laugh about the same things and have similar interests. But then there are those contemporaries who simply drive you crazy with their style.

A colleague who is unfriendly to you is more likely to succumb to malice. But whoever behaves this way turns a subordination into a self-fulfilling prophecy . Since you assume that the colleague will try to choke you in every imaginable situation, he will do the same. This can be done out of frustration, out of spite, and for a variety of other reasons. But it causes your working relationship to be destroyed by mistrust and displeasure.

Collaboration is then no longer possible. But there are ways you can fix this broken working relationship:

Reconsider your behavior and attitude.For an improvement to be possible in the first place, you must give your colleague a chance. This is only possible if you change your attitude and your behavior towards him. Do not focus on what annoys you. Try to look sympathetically at your colleague, just as you do with your favorite colleagues.
Do not bang on being right. Have you heard about the argument about adjusting the backrest of two aircraft passengers from the USA? On the flight from Newark to Denver, a woman wanted to lean back, but the passenger behind her wanted to work and fixed the seat with a special device. The dispute escalated and the plane had to make a stopover. If two parties insist on your right, the fronts harden. One has to give in to defuse the situation. Of course this is difficult, but then you put a good cooperation into focus.
Get involved with the other's point of view. Conflicts often arise because no consideration is given to the opinion and feelings of another person. This is where open communication helps. Tell yourself what bothers you, but also give your counterpart the chance to do so. Anyone who succeeds in putting oneself in the position of the other person is more likely to understand.
Start over. The working relationship with a colleague you are arguing with will not improve if you are vindictive. Unearthing every vicious comment and taunt usually does not go anywhere. On the contrary: it causes the colleague to feel that he has to defend himself. Leave the disputes of the past behind. From now on only the current behavior counts.
Involve other people. Get support from colleagues you have a good relationship with. These can help you to stick to the good intentions. For example, they may remind you that you wanted to be more benevolent and not subject the other to malicious intent.
Build mutual trust. Distrust has crept in with a broken working relationship. This is to get out of the way. Show the other that you can rely on them and that you are trustworthy. For example, offer your support. If your partner sees that you keep your word, the trust gradually grows .

Conflicts strengthen the team
If conflicts in the team succeed on a factual level, not only will the results be better, but the team spirit will also grow noticeably. In conflicts, colleagues often get to know each other much better than is possible in their daily work.

Do not get me wrong, of course you should not consciously provoke conflicts, but an open approach to different points of view and a moderated discussion make perfect sense. The entire team - and thus also the company - can benefit from this. As an employee, you can do a lot to help deal with conflict:

Address discrepancies promptly and seek clarification.
Encourage colleagues to be open about conflict as well.
Stay objective in your argumentation and never change to the personal level.
Encourage the team to work together to develop rules for factual discussions.
If the discussions are stuck, get a trusted colleague or your team leader as moderator.
Remember, especially in heated discussions, what it is all about and that it is not a personal matter.
Be aware of the good results after a discussion. Look forward to the successful teamwork together with your colleagues.
Arguing makes you more creative
Arguing makes you more creativeThe psychologist Carsten De Dreu from the University of Amsterdam showed in his research that anyone who discusses (commonly argues), is constantly challenged cognitively, has to adapt his thoughts, tactics and arguments - and usually under the time pressure of a quick exchange. In other words, who argues is highly creative and at the same time trains those skills. Assuming, however, that one does not simply argue like a stubborn lawyer, but actually tries to respond to the arguments of the other, weighs them, takes on assumptions in order to simultaneously re-question them. Then occasional quarrels can actually make you more creative.

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