November 15, 2015

Lessons from "Conflict Management Sessions"

The quotes in this post are participant feedback from a one day conflict management session delivered to IT professionals in Kochi, India. 

Participants were asked, "After attending this session, how can you prevent and/or resolve conflict?"
To prevent conflict, we have to respect others and their decisions. Take into account everyone's opinions. 

I should be more patient and listen to the other person's perspective. We should try to discuss it rather than making assumptions about it. In some cases, I should be flexible. If the other person has good ideas, maybe I can compromise. 

I am more confident to handle problems inside and outside of work after taking the session. Jennifer also added a small section on how to handle conflicts in our native language. Though she is not fluent in Malayalam, she was able to facilitate us in a group discussion and activity on this which helped us understand it better in our own culture. 
We have to know there are no winners from a conflict. We have to consider how badly the other person may be impacted during the conflict to find a reasonable solution which benefits both sides. 
If I pay attention to our conflict triggers and others, this helps us to prevent conflicts or to avoid escalating problems. Also, understanding triggers helps us to be more sensitive to our own and others feelings and emotions. 
Something suprising I learned is that conflict is not always bad. I always avoided conflict because it's uncomfortable. This session helped me by providing me skills in communicating in difficult situatoins. Rather than avoid conflict, now I am confident to discuss challenges with my colleagues in hopes of learning and improving ourselves.
Though we feel it's easier to give good feedback rather than negative feedback, this session helped me to articulate with more accuracy positive feedback as well as how to point out mistakes or tell someone they are wrong in a collobrative way. I also have understood how to take feedback professionally, without taking it too personally.  
If your team would like to know more about the conflict resolution sessions available for offshore teams in India and beyond, contact us today.

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