Uncommon but also learnable.
Using good process
A lesson from theatrical improv can teach us a powerful way to respond effectively to blame. “I’m getting blamed for everything,” she said. “Every time I talk to my husband about our problems, he blames me.” She wanted to know, understandably, how to stop the cycle and the blameshifting. Mediators ask me how to manage […]
Is it better to start with the biggest issues, then work out the ancillary or other smaller issues? Or will you be better off sorting out a bunch of smaller issues before taking on the big one? Here’s how to decide.
When a conflict has been going on for a while, other ancillary conflicts tend to sprout around it. And sometimes those ancillary conflicts will linger even once the central conflict is resolved. It is the nature of conflict and here’s what to do about it.
Ed Catmull, President of Pixar and Disney Animation, puts it this way: “There is the problem you know you are trying to solve–think of that as an oak tree–and then there are all the other problems–think of these as saplings–that sprouted from the acorns that fell around it. And these problems remain after you cut the oak tree down.”
And he tells a great story to illustrate his point…
The usual question when faced with a conflict is, “How can we resolve it?” But what if there’s a better question to ask — and one that might even help us be more creative with our solutions? A group of students at the Art Institute of Chicago approached two large tables holding 27 random objects. […]
This is a letter intended for anyone who may wish to hire me for conflict resolution training in their organization.
When an organization approaches me for conflict resolution training or negotiation training, I find that there are certain conversation threads that come up again and again. So, I thought I would mention them here, in anticipation of a future time when we may speak about your organization’s conflict resolution and training needs. I hope they’re helpful to your thinking about what you need from a trainer and to your assessment of my fit for the assistance you seek.
When friends, loved ones, and colleagues tell us about a conflict they’re experiencing, how we respond helps shape their conflict story. And what they do next.
A friend who mediates legal cases was regaling me with a story about a court employee who treated her with disrespect. As I listened to my friend’s description of the employee’s behavior, I felt outrage on my friend’s behalf. I heard myself say,
You’ve got this.
It’s worth figuring out
It’s a mistake to conflate good supervision and the habit of intervening in employees’ conflicts. Not only with the habit wear you out eventually and take energy away from other important responsibilities, but you will miss prime opportunities to help your staff cultivate their own good skills.
At one of my recent workshops, a participant shared this great case in point: