December 10, 2015

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It’s December but is the vibe in your office not all that jolly?

Conflict in the workplace is a problem. So much so, that a recent study found that drama at work robs hours of productivity each week simply as a distraction from tasks. Couple that with the additional unhealthy stress employees feel when embroiled in conflict and the result? Not so good.

It is important to handle conflict appropriately. Doing so safeguards your company AND ensures that the matter is resolved and can even protect against future disputes.

If you’re unsure how to handle a conflict, Eos HR is here to help. We’ll guide you through the appropriate (and legal) way to handle the conflict, and provide you with a behavior policy for your employees.

In the meantime, here are three steadfast rules to dealing with conflict:

1. Listen.

No press release needed to announce that the majority of conflict arises out of miscommunication, and that includes when managers do not take the care to listen to employee’s grievances. Take the time to listen to each of the individuals involved (but NOT all together). Not only will your employees feel their distress acknowledged, you’ll also have the information you need to address the situation.

2. Don’t let it fester….because it WON’T go away.

Hear a rumor? Feel a cold draft coming from the down the hall? Don’t ignore it! We intuitively have a resistance towards confrontation, but don’t give in to this because the problem won’t just go away. Find the source, gather the facts, nip it in the butt. Done and done.

3. Outline appropriate behavior to all staff from day one.

SO important! Your company’s employee handbook should have a section dedicated to appropriate workplace behavior and state how conflict will be addressed. Consistency is key: define a policy on conflict management and stick with it. Your employees will appreciate the company’s reliability in handling disputes. And you’ll reap the benefits from a happy and productive staff.

Keep the cold outside the office this winter!

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