How to Handle Conflict at Work

August 30, 2018

Career Advice

“Well, this is awkward…” That thought has probably passed your mind when faced with conflict. Especially at work. There will be many times throughout your career where you will disagree on how to tackle a project, move forward with a timeline, or resolve an issue. How do you express your opinion without offending someone? And how do you vocalize those thoughts when you’re too nervous to do so? Even when you know that not speaking up could be worse?

Keep this in mind: business is business. Work conflicts are different than life conflicts. They don’t have to be awkward. Instead of being awkward, be assertive. But how does one do that? There are a few small tips that can help you address the issue at hand without feeling like you’re attacking someone else’s idea.

  1. Stick to the facts: State the problem. State your concerns. Be sure to listen to their response before you chime in again. Also avoid using phrases like “always” or “never.” This isn’t an attack.
  2. Ask questions: Feel like you’re walking on eggshells around this person? Ask important questions that may help that person see where problems could arise, or can at least help you understand where they are coming from in this thought process.
  3. Present a solution: Instead of just shooting down an idea, bring another option to the table. Avoid using “but…” Instead, try “and.” Instead of saying, “I see your point, but I think…” try, “I see how that could work and I’d like to also consider…”

Image via Tom MacWright/Flickr.

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About Spectrum Brands Careers

Spectrum Brands is a global $5 Billion Consumer Products company headquartered in Middleton, Wisconsin. While you may not be familiar with the Spectrum Brands name, there is no doubt you will recognize some of our brands.

View all posts by Spectrum Brands Careers

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