How to Resolve Conflict Between Co-workers

How to Resolve Conflict Between Coworkers

One of the many dark shades of corporate work culture is the conflict between coworkers. It can really become violent at times and culminate in personal attacks. Apart from personal setbacks, it can also affect group morale and that is a curse that every manager is afraid of.  Resolving conflict between coworkers can be very tricky, but also a very satisfactory job. It alleviates the general vibe of the company and workers. If such conflicts are not resolved, the work environment becomes drab and people work like machines without any innovative touch and cheerful delivery. Tension among colleagues casts its shadow on bonding between group members and therefore work. In fact, conflicts can sometimes come to such a pass that employees get divided into two groups. It may even result in the firing of employees. However, such conflicts can be resolved with a bit of patience and by catching the bull by the horns.

Intervene Sooner, Rather Than Later

Time alone rarely solves conflicts, you need more. Managers need to act early banking on a set of clear expectations from individual employees or groups of employees. Sometimes managers do try to avoid dealing with conflict between coworkers since it is usually uncomfortable.  They are often not prepared for the job.

Meet both of Them

Meeting both  concerned employees together is a better way of dealing with conflict between coworkers than having separate meetings. Separate meetings have the potential to create more distrust. Conflict can be resolved only when either trust builds up between the colleagues or between each of them individually and the manager.

Creating a Positive Vibe

A positive start to the conflict resolution meeting can be made by asking each of the angry employees to share something valuable about his colleague with whom he is in conflict. This has the potential to make the warring parties recoil from their attacking stance and try to figure out something positive in his colleague. This has the innate effect of soothing the nerves and calming down.

Reduce Tension by Relaxing and Deep Breathing

You have to create a positive vibe in the meeting arena for which you need to reduce tension. This can be done by relaxing and requesting both the warring parties to relax. Ask them to take deep breaths and relax so that they can sooth their tensed nerves and calm down. All these may be difficult to do. However, you can make it happen with attentive expressions and confident manners.

Careful Listening Is Half the Battle Won

Listening to what the warring colleagues have to say is key to starting a good conflict resolution endeavor. Jumping into their conversation without listening to what they have to say is not a good idea. Emphasis has to be put on employees themselves since it is they who can beget a solution; you are just a facilitator. Standing face to face and discussing the incidents can lead to resolution of misunderstanding and conflict between coworkers. It is at this moment that you should step in when you feel that there is a misunderstanding and the colleagues are amenable to mending their mistrust for each other.


These are some of the ways to resolve conflicts between coworkers. Hope these pointers will help you to resolve the conflict between coworkers in the workplace.

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