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Poor workplace communication and overall dysfunction lead to employees fighting with another. Ultimately, it adversely affects profits.

Weak managers ignore such disputes.

Effective managers jump into action and mediate employee disputes. How? Why? Successful managers have excellent self-awareness and emotional intelligence.


For High Performance Create an Emotionally Intelligent Culture


Do you have such issues?

Your team’s morale and teamwork is enhanced if you successfully mediate conflicts. It demonstrates a healthy management approach. That’s actually how good employees want to view you and your management style.

Good mediation requires a skillful approach:

1. Focus on guidance

Unless there’s clearly malfeasance by one of the employees, take steps to be seen as an objective facilitator seeking a resolution not as a dictator.

This means an informal process, and being impartial and encouraging expression of feelings.

Note: if you discover a serious issue such as harassment or violence, immediately switch gears. Take strident steps in your manager’s role to correct the issue.

2. Encourage good communication and empathy

Encourage civility and respectful listening. Take steps to make sure both employees understand how hostile behavior affects each other as well as the whole team.

Give each of them enough time to express their feelings without being interrupted. Encourage each person to listen empathetically.

For clarity to ensure both people understand the negative impacts of their behavior, summarize the key issues.

3. Stay resolute on the mission

Caution: Some employees will try to persuade you to only see their side.

Remind the employee that your objective is to acknowledge different points of view, and to determine how to get both people working together harmoniously.

Inquire of each person to state their goals. Encourage them to be flexible and to seek solutions for the welfare of the organization.

4. Stay positive

Sometimes such conflict can be discouraging. But remember you’re the manager and it’s important to stay optimistic and not tentative.

Find points of agreement. On what points can both parties agree? Encourage both people to brainstorm ideas on how to resolve the conflict.

Conclude the discussion with each of you knowing what to expect. Offer your appreciation for their efforts. Tell them of your confidence from the results of the discussion.

Followup with each person to monitor the progress.

Good luck!

From the Coach’s Corner, here are related topics:

5 Tips to Manage Employees Who Fight Each Other to Win Favoritism from You — Personality conflict isn’t the only reason workers fight among themselves. They also fight hoping for your approval — to get favored treatment from you. Either way — whatever the cause — rivalries among employees hinder your workplace morale and productivity.

How You Can Eliminate Destructive Conflict for Better Teamwork — For better employee-team decision-making and higher performance, it’s true that constructive conflict works. Usually, the best ideas evolve when ideas are discussed and debated. But when employees fail to exercise self control and their egos get in the way, emotions flare and cliques are formed in the workplace.

How to Grow Your EI for Leadership Success — Emotional intelligence (EI) is important for communication and leadership. A person who has EI is able to evaluate, understand, and control emotions.

HR: 17 Tips to Fine-Tune Management of your Staff — To achieve higher profits, you can become more strategic about managing your marketplace challenges. But the marketplace represents only 50 percent of an entrepreneur’s headaches. Internal factors within your company also contribute to entrepreneur insomnia.

For Profits, High-Performing Cultures Have 7 Traits — Why is it that some company cultures have teams of high performers who generate profits? Such team members collectively excel because they share seven inter-related traits.

“When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but creatures of emotion.” 

-Dale Carnegie


Author Terry Corbell has written innumerable online business-enhancement articles, and is a business-performance consultant and profit professional. Click here to see his management services. For a complimentary chat about your business situation or to schedule him as a speaker, consultant or author, please contact Terry.