Workplace Conflict: How To Deal With It
A recent study of remote workers found that 80% of respondents experienced conflict in a remote environment. If you broaden the focus to all types of workplaces, another study found that 85% of employees at all levels have experienced workplace conflict to some degree.
That means that most of us have dealt with our fair share of workplace drama.
Conflict at work is inevitable, but even though we can’t entirely avoid it, we can become better at resolving our disputes. How well you and your team handle conflict can make a world of difference to your organization, even when there are intimidating situations to address.
Have no fear because we’re diving into workplace conflicts — including what they are, how to spot them, and how to help resolve them.
What Is Workplace Conflict?
Workplace conflict occurs when there’s a disagreement amongst employees due to opposing interests, personalities, beliefs, or ideas. Conflict in the workplace is natural and bound to occur when you have people of different backgrounds and perspectives working side-by-side.
Conflict can be expressed in various ways, including lack of cooperation, verbal insults, bullying, anger, poor quality or delayed work, project failure, and more.
You don’t have to fear workplace conflict in your organization. It’s natural and can even be healthy when dealt with appropriately. Let’s explore the types of conflict in the workplace, signs of conflict, and tips for conflict resolution to help you tackle disputes in your organization.
Types Of Conflict In The Workplace?
Yes, not all conflicts are the same — there are different types of conflict in the workplace. Let’s take a look at some of the most common types to watch out for:
1. Personality Conflicts
Clashes due to different personality types are some of the most common types of workplace conflicts. These conflicts are impossible to avoid because we all have our own personalities and won’t get along with every person we meet. Personality-based conflicts can be challenging and frustrating, but it’s beneficial to learn how to work with individuals whose approaches and perspectives are different from your own.
2. Interdependent Task-Based Conflicts
Think about the processes that help your organization stay afloat. Often, there are a lot of cross-functional processes that take place within interdependent workstreams. For example, your IT department may be responsible for setting up accounts and technology for new hires once HR informs them of the new hire’s start date. But what if HR forgets to tell IT about a new hire and the new employee arrives on their first day and isn’t set up and ready to work? These types of interdependencies can be frustrating and cause conflict, particularly amongst departments.