How To Mend a Problem with a Coworker

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How To Mend a Problem with a Coworker

Encourager-In-Chief: May 10th, 2017

How to mend a problem using effective communication.

One of my colleagues had a falling out with someone very close to her, who was assisting her in running a networking organization. As a result, hurt feelings caused this other person to leave and take 100 members with her. You can imagine how devastating this was to the organization.

Here are some ways you can avoid suffering a similar consequence:

  1. Change your definition of conflict. Most people view a conflict as a negative. The best definition I’ve ever heard of conflict is "two people with different needs". When you look at it this way, it takes a lot of the animosity out of the situation.
  2. As Stephen Covey would say, "start with the end in mind"; decide on the outcome you want from this situation.
  3. Don’t just be concerned with your own outcome, but also with your counterpart’s outcome. In other words, think win/win.
  4. Gauge how upset the other person is. By doing this, it will give you an idea of how important this matter is to him or her.
  5. Try to take the emotion out of the disagreement.
  6. Be professional.If you have a situation like the one I’ve described, remember that this will play out in a public forum and others will know how well you attempted to resolve the issues.
  7. Be a leader worth following. While working through the differences, visualize all the people who know about the situation witnessing your behavior.
  8. Try first to understand before you attempt to be understood. If you can paraphrase your counterpart’s position and gain agreement from that person, the odds are greatly increased that you’ll reach a mutually acceptable outcome.

I challenge you to view a conflict as an opportunity for deepening the relationship.

I’ll quote my mentor, Don Hutson, who said, “What’s right is more important than who’s right.” Be gracious and live to resolve a conflict another day.

No matter how thin you slice it, there’s always two sides.
- Tony Robbins

This excerpt is taken from my Conquering Conflicts with Difficult People seminar.

Communication Excellence II: Conquering Conflicts With Difficult People


I encourage you to order my Negotiation Excellence video program which includes this lesson in greater detail.

Negotiation Excellence


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