One of the biggest challenges of any company is to be able to solve the conflicts and problems that inevitably end up happening among employees. Certainly, these conflicts happened in the past and continue to happen, as it is an inevitable result of coexistence and human relationships, and they are more frequent when there is a common goal that may have different points of view and interpretations to achieve the common goal.
Conflicts happen mainly due to the fact that a company is not formed by people who were born, raised, and had the same cultural upbringing in one house, on the contrary. Organizations, whether they are profit-oriented businesses or non-profit organizations, are made up of people who already have a whole history of individual life with origins, habits, personalities, values, and totally different and different ideas.
If you pay attention to all of this, it will make the job of resolving conflicts easier, and in this article, you will understand how to resolve conflicts in an easy, fast, and low-cost way.
The importance of conflict resolution
It seems that conflicts only make days within companies less pleasant, but their damage goes far beyond an unpleasant climate and a team with distant members from one another. According to the Conflict Report, in 2008 approximately $359 billion was lost in hours paid to resolve these conflicts in the US alone.
And this study considers the hours paid to resolve conflicts, the losses arising from a decrease in productivity that is related to an unpleasant climate, and also the increase in time spent to finalize projects just because many employees “postpone” carrying out or submitting certain work tasks to their teammates because they don't want to talk to them take these losses to a level that is almost impossible to quantify.
In addition to the increase in the turnover of hiring new employees due to the simple fact that many professionals leave their positions in companies because they feel bad in relation to other team members.
Resolving current employee conflicts
Before you can create a structure that will lessen and prevent future conflicts, you need to resolve the current conflicts that employees are experiencing, so before thinking about the future, focus on solving these problems now!
Understand the conflict
The first task to be carried out is to understand the conflict, how it arose, and how much damage it is causing to the employees and the organization. Here it is worth noting that simply dismissing an employee and thinking “that's it, problem solved” is not a very smart and not very effective thought. Because it just gives a sense of duty without actually solving the problem, you have to go further and understand the whole creation of the conflict.
Make sure that the conflict is not something that can be brought before the courts or any government agency, there are problems that are generated by a failure of communication and there are others that are criminal cases. If it is an event that could be considered a crime, be professional and apply an appropriate punishment, if it is just a miscommunication, understand when it arises and from which phrase it originated.
Show you care about what both sides feel
If it's just a miscommunication, nothing to do with a criminal act, demonstrate to both sides of this conflict that you care about what they feel and think. Arguments and disagreements can very well generate these problems, however, that does not mean that one side is wrong or right, in fact, both can be right and wrong at the same time. And that scenario of both being right and wrong at the same time is the most common one.
Be empathetic, and understand how each is feeling.
Analyze the two solutions
For everything in life, there is a solution, and for conflicts between people, there is always one more, usually a solution for each side of the fight. Listen carefully to the solutions presented by both sides, possibly, the solutions presented will not be definitive at the time of finalizing the whole process, as each side will try to favor itself over the other.
After listening to what each has come up with, look carefully at how these two solutions can be merged into one so that they favor both sides at the same time so that the concessions that must be made do not affect the employees involved so much.
Broker the solution conversation
The role played by those who resolve conflicts between employees must never be that of a judge, where he must play the same role that psychologists play when they are called to resolve legal disputes: that of an intermediary. An intermediary basically sits in the middle between the two sides involved and does not actually state his opinion, he just puts the cards on the table about what was presented and asks each party to speak about their side, always limiting possible aggressions and offenses that may eventually arise and guide the conversation to resolve.
By guiding the solution conversation, as the mediator already has an analysis of the entire situation, he can guide the conversation to arrive at a solution similar to yours, but this is just one point of the whole process, and it must be done as a suggestion, not a final decision.
The final solution to the employee conflict must be agreed upon and accepted by everyone, including the mediator. It is worth mentioning, to try to make the conversation as pleasant and empathetic as possible, to enable a new close and respectful relationship between the participants after the conflict is over.
How to prevent new conflicts from happening
A magic formula capable of eliminating the emergence of new conflicts, whether and any kind between people, has not yet been discovered by humanity or by science, but this is visible in the current world. However, the knowledge to substantially reduce and prevent new conflicts from arising, and even to prevent them from growing when they have already begun, exists.
Provide Quality Cultural Training
One of the most divergent points in a company is the cultural differences that all new employees bring to the organization every time someone is admitted as a new member of the business. Most companies have an organizational culture, but most of them don't even know how to explain what that culture is and how it works in practice.
Quality cultural training goes beyond the simple instruction with an employee showing the organizational guidelines on a slide or a lecture in some videoconference meeting, a training par excellence needs to be the involvement of the trainees so that they can get used to this new culture that is not they're used to it.
Showing situations that are common to everyone in society, and putting them in the training to provide a knowledge base facilitates the process, after using this example, ask the trainer to expose a situation that he experienced within the company to make it more real what he teaches.
Another equally efficient way is to present a situation and ask the new collaborators to say what they would do in that same situation, different answers will come out, but the assimilation is improved when there is a conversation or debate around the scenario presented to the group.
Have a culture that benefits all
The biggest mistake of organizational cultures is precisely to create a statute of rigid rules that, in addition to not making any sense for those who work in the organization, are also harmful to the entire team that provides their work to make the company grow.
Invest some time, and perhaps money, to talk and understand how everyone involved who is making the company's machine work so that they say what they think about aspects of the culture, in order to modify it to the point of benefit to them too.
Frederick Herzberg, one of the most renowned and remembered psychologists after years of a study published his book, The Motivation to Work, the Theory of Two Factors. This theory talks about hygiene and motivational factors.
Basically, hygienic factors are those external to the individual, provided by companies, such as organizational climate and culture, salary, supervision, working environment conditions, and safety. By inserting these factors, you prevent employee dissatisfaction, however, they do not motivate or create satisfaction by themselves. The factors are insufficient to create and perpetuate contentment.
Motivational factors are those linked to the employee himself, but which the external environment, companies, can also insert to create motivation and, consequently, generate high and prolonged satisfaction, such as recognition for his work, individual responsibilities, the feeling of personal growth, autonomy when carrying out their duties.
All this can be translated, quickly but not completely, into the feeling of belonging and power of action that employees have within the companies to which they are connected. If the organizational culture limits employees to having the necessary autonomy to fully exercise their functions, if the environment is highly punitive, it increases the distance of communication between teams and other employees who are in linked activities and there is no minimum of feedback that makes the individual feel recognized, there is a barrier that prevents the satisfaction of the great majority.
Think about everything in this topic when analyzing how the organizational culture in your company relates to the staff, after all, a company is made of people, human beings, without them, there is no productivity, even a machine needs a human being to turn on and off to be able to produce a product.
Make the company's coexistence policies explicit
Do not allow the way in which your coach or individuals in positions at the top of the hierarchy talk about company policies that allow for interpretation in different ways, create texts, and efficient phrases for communication. You can only interpret what is being transmitted by speech or text, if it is not possible to eliminate all possibilities of different interpretations, try to reduce the chances of this happening to the maximum!
Integrate an effective communication system
Technology is designed to make it easy to achieve the goals we want. Integrating an efficient system to improve company communication, whether between employees from different areas and different departments or from the same team, considerably reduces the emergence of new conflicts between employees.
Communication platforms such as Changelogfy, for example, provide these tools to create this complex and challenging system that is human communication, using which resources, which, if well used, reduce noise and speed up the task of modifying the organizational culture and resolution of new problems that surely must arise at some point.
An example is to use the private roadmap of the all-in-one platform, in this roadmap the human relations manager of the companies can put what is being done to improve, enhance or modify some aspects of the company or some new product, with a timeline, and interaction of all employees who can vote on what was presented, which ideas are most urgent and important to be implemented to maximize productivity, say whether they liked it or not, suggestions on new implementations that managers cannot capture by lack of time.
The benefits of using a complete platform designed for this process are truly impressive.
Feedback as approximation tools
Many companies only use feedback on one side and for productivity purposes, however, they forget that productivity also depends on the other side of the coin receiving feedback. It is not just employees who need to receive feedback for their actions and time spent working in companies, organizations need and should receive feedback from their employees to improve the work environment in order to be reflected in an increase in productivity and a decrease in costs to counter damage powers.
Still using the Changelogfy platform as an example, the human resources management team can easily receive feedback from employees, knowing who sent the feedback, and how anonymously it is, which in large companies is recognized as the best option for employees to be able to be sincere and not lying about what is happening inside the organization when leaders are not present.
Encourage your employees to offer and receive feedback, always with respect and a communication format in order to avoid new conflicts and disrespect that may arise if the information is passed on in error.
Encourage employee participation in ideas offered by their peers
The final decisions can only be taken by the leaders and individuals who occupy the top of the organizational hierarchy, but this is not an excuse for not allowing your employees to suggest new ideas and for other employees to discuss them complement them, and present more efficient ways of doing things. what was presented or even highlighting errors that an idea presented may have and its possible effects on the company and on the lives of individuals.
Stimulating this type of action and attitude within your company will strengthen the feeling of belonging to the place where they work, improving the relationship between employees and the place, bringing each of the company's objectives and goals closer together, in addition to adding value and meaning to what they do perform every day.
Very common errors
Now that you know what to do, understand what NOT to do under any circumstances, under any circumstances, and that will only make internal problems worse and increase the amount of conflict between employees.
Don't Copy Outdated Ideas
The biggest mistake made by most companies today is trying to reproduce outdated ideas and formats of coexistence simply because they experienced them during their creation. It is common to think that a company with many decades or even centuries of life knows more about coexistence than the new ones, but this is nothing more than an inefficient vision of reality for two reasons:
- Century-old companies like NINTENDO for example, do not have the same organizational culture since they were founded centuries ago. Its culture changes and transforms itself based on changes in the worldview and also on the cultural behavior of society as a whole. These large companies with long lifespans are still alive today precisely because they know when to change, how to change, and what is the meaning of change.
- The best and most amazing professionals do not need to be tied to a workplace, or to a single company, precisely because they are excellent at what they do, they are highly sought after by other companies that offer opportunities and benefits to “capture” them. If your company can't pay its employees better or offer the best equipment, or something that money is a barrier to, you need to offer something that is so important to the employee that it keeps him loyal and faithful to your organization. This can simply be a better work environment, with quality coexistence, leaders concerned with well-being and who prefer to stimulate autonomy and growth than to punish at all times.
View the company as an organism from outside society
Companies are organizations, and organizations are fundamental parts of society and fundamental means that they are not only inserted but are part of it. If the behaviors of society, consumers, the labor market, and social values change, your company needs to change as well to avoid conflicts. After all, society's values are inevitably inserted into organizations by the employees themselves, since it is impossible to separate a human being entirely just because he passed through an office door, or a factory or entered his login and password into the business system.
It is difficult for many people to change, especially when leaders are already used to and injected by their life history, but as was said earlier, only companies that understand changes in society manage to stay alive in society.
Not frequently analyzing internal coexistence
If the manager simply does everything described in this article once and then spends years without ever again collecting and analyzing the company's internal and external situation, it is almost guaranteed that the problems will return, and they will return with force.
The human relationship is a variable in constant transformation, and communication too. It is always necessary to collect new information that comes in, and analyze the old ones to see if there are expected results, if there are no positive results, then it is better to think of new ways and apply new solutions.
Withdraw life from the organization
Human beings are moved by life, and life can have different definitions depending on the philosophical and scientific perspective used, here life will be defined as what makes us human and everything that condemns us to live as human. If human beings have feelings and are moved by feelings, whether they are joy, motivation, sadness, or anguish, it is necessary to make room for employees to express them.
If the launch of a product was not as successful as expected and ended up distressing everyone in the organization, do not immediately end this feeling of sadness or frustration on the part of employees just by saying “let's get better, next time it will be a success”. Allow the company as a whole to feel the reflection of what happened for a day or two, and that goes for positive moments and feelings too.
Trying to eliminate or restrict the needs we are obliged to satisfy is also a huge mistake, many companies limit the time that the employee has to go to the bathroom, determine a very short period of time to eat, rest for 10 minutes after 5 hours uninterrupted hours of work is almost a luxury as if it were possible for a human being to perform any activity with excellence and its best performance for so long without taking a minimum of rest.
Never take life away from your organization, because if it has no life, it also won't have good enough employees for the company to grow, and the organization will be stuck having only employees who are doing the least possible in it just because they need to have a means. of sustenance never devoting himself to developing his surroundings and his income.