Some amount of conflict in the workplace is inevitable, but when conflict is allowed to linger and it escalates, this is when it becomes the business owner’s problem.
Supportive and collaborative workplaces where working relationships are good, improve performance and productivity, but where conflict and dysfunction have become the norm in a team, the business suffers. When this is not addressed early on, team issues can seem so much worse by the time they get to you.
Why many managers can’t or won’t deal with conflict
So why are managers not addressing this? This is a constant source of frustration for you as the business owner.
- It could be that managers have ended up in their role ‘accidentally’ and don’t have the experience or confidence to deal with conflict and other difficult situations.
- It could be that they just don’t want to get involved. And let’s not forget the other option; managers might actually be the cause of the conflict!
But we can’t blame managers too much.
Management training has almost always revolved around the strategic and operational aspects of the role, rather than making sure they are equipped to do one of the most difficult tasks in leadership and management – managing people.
Skills like having difficult conversations and managing conflict are often overlooked, but they are so integral to building great teams and positive workplace culture.
Plus, we can’t ignore the fact that as the business owner, you constantly feel the conflict between the need to focus your time and energy on strategic tasks and the need to wade into a people management role.
You know the strategic tasks will help propel the business forward but you worry about managers not being willing or able to take on most of the responsibility for managing people.
So what’s the solution?
Managers need to be given training on how to create a positive and collaborative culture in their team, as well as being able to deal with conflict, have difficult conversations, build trust, and handle different situations with sensitivity and empathy.
If managers are competent and confident in these areas, workplace conflict will happen far less frequently because team members will feel listened to and better supported. What’s more, the next time conflict does arise, it won’t be left to fester, which is good news for the business and for you!
Management development: laying the groundwork for better workplace relationships and success
It’s crucial that businesses invest in developing managers so that they feel more confident in dealing with conflict and building a positive and supportive team culture. Not only that, when given the right training, they will be able to prevent conflict in the future, not just manage it once it’s happening.
How I can help
• I know that you don’t have the time to deal with all the team issues that end up on your desk, especially when they should have been picked up on by a manager early on.
• I know that you want to spend your time and energy on the customer-facing work that is going to help increase turnover.
As your #TeamFixer, I can equip managers with the tools, techniques, and skills to deal with people issues as they arise, so they aren’t left to linger and do damage to the business.
When managers feel more prepared and confident in dealing with people, they’ll be able to prevent and manage conflict and build better performing teams where everyone pulls in the same direction.
And when things are running smoothly, that’s good news for you, because then you can get on with the things that are really going to make a difference to the business.
To find out more about how I can help as your #TeamFixer, get in touch to arrange a chat.