Do you ever walk on eggshells? Would you rather have a root canal than engage in conflict? Join the club.
You may think that avoiding conflict makes you a good leader – but the opposite is true. Conflict, handled properly, increases collaboration, trust and influence, which are all essential for successful performance in the workplace.
Walking on eggshells can be more than just uncomfortable – it can negatively affect your organization’s bottom line. According to research conducted by the authors of the New York Times bestselling book Crucial Conversations, 95% percent of the workforce struggles to speak up to their colleagues about their concerns. It is estimated that on average, each avoided crucial conversation costs a company $1,500 and an 8-hour workday.
Imagine how much better things would be if you and your team could stop walking on eggshells and master the art of managing conflict. Kind of boggles the mind, doesn’t it? As a leader, if you teach your people to have tough conversations, hold others accountable, and argue productively, you’ll create a high functioning team and collaborative environment. Of course, once you decide to stop walking on eggshells, you don’t want to go to the other extreme and throw gasoline on the fire. There are a few simple rules to follow that help keep conflict in the productivity zone, rather than the problem zone. Here are just two:
Nip Problems In The Bud. Just as weeds are easily picked when small, conflict is most easily resolved in its earliest stages. The first time a problem arises, have a conversation. That enables you to address the issue in a calmer, more collaborative manner than after it has happened multiple times.
Avoid Piling On. In an effort to provide protection, football teams are penalized when extra players “pile on” a ball carrier who is already down. When dealing with conflict, stick to addressing the problem at hand, not what the person has or hasn’t done in the past. Refraining from “piling on” safeguards individuals and relationships, keeps things clear and on point, and decreases defensiveness.
Want to learn more? Set up an appointment to talk with me about bringing my keynote speech or workshop No More Walking on Eggshells to your next conference or corporate event. Just click here http://www.meetme.so/ShereneMcHenry to schedule a call.
Let’s keep you and your team from walking on eggshells and Increase Your Impact!