Conflict Mgmt (4) White


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  • No job or life, really, is without conflict. There are successful and not so successful ways of handling it, however. Today we are going to talk about a simple, effective method that will make it easier to deal with conflict and have great results – with no hard feelings.
  • Conflict Mgmt (4) White

    1. 1. How NOT to Kill Each Other at Work: Conflict Management in the Lab Marty Boesenberg, MSEd., SCT(ASCP) The Iowa Clinic West Des Moines, IA
    2. 2. Acknowledgement <ul><li>Based on work by Erin Peterson, </li></ul><ul><li>Adjunct Professor, Drake University </li></ul><ul><li>With additional input from </li></ul><ul><li>Sue Zaleski, MS, HT, CT(ASCP) </li></ul><ul><li>University of Iowa </li></ul>
    3. 3. First Some Questions <ul><li>What feelings come up when you think about conflict? </li></ul><ul><li>How do you usually handle conflict? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Between co-workers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Between you other departments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Between you and your boss/pathologist </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4. Defining Conflict <ul><li>Conflict is… </li></ul><ul><li>a struggle between two parties who perceive their goals or styles as incompatible. </li></ul><ul><li>a disagreement through which the parties involved perceive a threat to their needs, interests or concerns </li></ul>
    5. 5. Four Sources of Conflict <ul><li>Facts/data </li></ul><ul><li>Process/method </li></ul><ul><li>Purpose </li></ul><ul><li>Values </li></ul>
    6. 6. Facts/Data <ul><li>For example: </li></ul><ul><li>Expressions open to interpretation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What is an ‘acceptable’ performance? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When is ‘as soon as possible’? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Differing sources </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Are you referring to the new policy or last month’s? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do you mean CLIA regulations or CAP guidelines? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Simple miscommunications </li></ul>
    7. 7. Process/Method <ul><li>For example: </li></ul><ul><li>Decision making </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do you use your gut reaction or gather data and carefully weigh pros & cons? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Who needs to be involved? </li></ul><ul><li>Do ‘politics’ need to be considered? </li></ul>
    8. 8. Purpose <ul><li>For example: </li></ul><ul><li>Differing or vague goals and objectives </li></ul><ul><li>Unclear about the ‘why’ behind a decision/action </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Is there a hidden agenda? Am I paranoid? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Conflicting priorities </li></ul>
    9. 9. Values <ul><li>Deeply held beliefs that guide organizational and personal behavior </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Respect </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Integrity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appreciation of Diversity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Empowerment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Kindness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Respect for Individuality </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Complexity Complexity Values Purpose Process/Methods Facts/Data
    11. 11. Identify the Conflict Type “ Why haven’t you taken that lung FNA down to the Pathologist yet? You’ve had it for an hour!”, cried Mary, the Cytology supervisor. Mary was anticipating yet another complaint from the pathologists about delayed non-gyns from the new cytotech, Carrie. Carrie looked up in confusion. There was a cell block ordered on the FNA that wouldn’t be out until tomorrow and Carrie understood that she could hold the case until then. _____ Type 1 Facts and Data _____ Type 2 Process or Methods _____ Type 3 Purpose _____ Type 4 Values
    12. 12. Identify the Conflict Type Kathy, the Lab Manager has asked Jenni to represent the Lab on a committee that is considering a change in employee education reimbursement. Jenni feels that she does not have any knowledge or understanding about the subject and suggests that Sam be on the committee. Kathy says no. _____ Type 1 Facts and Data _____ Type 2 Process or Methods _____ Type 3 Purpose _____ Type 4 Values
    13. 13. Identify the Conflict Type John is a long-time, pleasant, and productive cytotech, but he spends much of his work time talking about his favorite charity. It is a cause you believe in too, but you object to his using work time for this. When you bring up the issue John yells, “But this is about ending world hunger!” _____ Type 1 Facts and Data _____ Type 2 Process or Methods _____ Type 3 Purpose _____ Type 4 Values
    14. 14. Identify the Conflict Type Paula is in your office to complain about JoAnn. It seems JoAnn submitted time-off requests for the entire next year ahead and has taken all the Fridays around the long weekends. Everyone is furious but they haven’t said anything to JoAnn. _____ Type 1 Facts and Data _____ Type 2 Process or Methods _____ Type 3 Purpose _____ Type 4 Values
    15. 15. Why Identify the Type? <ul><li>Decide whether it‘s a simple or complex conflict </li></ul><ul><li>Predict flexibility of parties involved </li></ul><ul><li>Tailor communications to the type of conflict </li></ul><ul><li>Discover underlying causes of conflict </li></ul>
    16. 16. Underlying Causes of Workplace Conflict <ul><li>Precipitating event </li></ul><ul><li>Past experiences </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Generational differences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender differences </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Environmental issues </li></ul><ul><li>Communication differences </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Other ethnicities </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Stylistic differences </li></ul>
    17. 17. Differences in Style <ul><li>Tigers Teddies Turtles </li></ul>
    18. 18. Differences aren’t BAD, they’re just differences!
    19. 19. The Physiologic Response to Conflict How does conflict make you FEEL?
    20. 20. The Physiologic Response to Conflict <ul><li>What can you do to </li></ul><ul><li>gain control? </li></ul>
    21. 21. Take Responsibility for the Interaction <ul><li>Your interaction may alter the other’s day – for good or bad </li></ul><ul><li>Patient care/customer service may be impacted </li></ul><ul><li>You are 100% responsible for your actions in any encounter </li></ul>
    22. 22. Enter or Avoid a Conflict? It Depends <ul><li>“ What is the worst that could happen?” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They think I am out of line, aggressive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Situation could escalate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Or….. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“ What is the best that could happen?” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They appreciate my perspective </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Misunderstandings are clarified </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>We agree how to handle future conflicts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>And the conflict is resolved ! </li></ul></ul></ul>
    23. 23. There are times to avoid conflict, but you must chose those times carefully!
    24. 24. Responses to Conflict High Medium Low Low Medium High Importance of relationship Importance of outcome Accommodate I Lose, You Win Avoid I Lose, You Lose Collaborate I Win, You Win Compromise We Both Win, We Both Lose Compete I Win, You Lose
    25. 25. If we AVOID… <ul><li>We say: </li></ul><ul><li>“ I don’t want to hurt her feelings” </li></ul><ul><li>“ He’d take it the wrong way or get mad” </li></ul><ul><li>“ It is too late now, I’ll just drop it” </li></ul><ul><li>The impact: </li></ul><ul><li>Resentment/Revenge </li></ul><ul><li>Damaged Team Spirit </li></ul><ul><li>Lowered Productivity </li></ul><ul><li>Dampened Creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Ineffective processes </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of accountability </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforces passive/ </li></ul><ul><li>aggressive culture </li></ul>Accommodate Avoid Compromise Compete Collaborate
    26. 26. It is BEST to Avoid When… <ul><li>An issue is trivial or unimportant </li></ul><ul><li>When an issue is out of your control or influence </li></ul><ul><li>When relationship damage outweighs the benefits of resolution </li></ul>
    27. 27. If we ACCOMMODATE… <ul><li>We say: </li></ul><ul><li>“ Sure, whatever you say” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’ll go along to get along” </li></ul><ul><li>“ It doesn’t matter to me” </li></ul><ul><li>The impact: </li></ul><ul><li>Your needs are put aside </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of true solution </li></ul><ul><li>You may be seen as weak </li></ul><ul><li>Relationship is maintained </li></ul><ul><li>May be appropriate if outcome is of low importance </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforces passive/ </li></ul><ul><li>defensive culture </li></ul>Accommodate Collaborate Compromise Avoid Compete
    28. 28. It is BEST to Accommodate When… <ul><li>Preserving the relationship is most important </li></ul><ul><li>When you are wrong, or others’ ideas are better </li></ul><ul><li>When you have already lost the battle </li></ul>
    29. 29. If we COMPETE… <ul><li>We say: </li></ul><ul><li>“ This is what we’ll do…” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I see no other alternatives” </li></ul><ul><li>“ You need to do it this way” </li></ul><ul><li>The impact: </li></ul><ul><li>Bitter arguments/resentment </li></ul><ul><li>Holding back knowledge or turf wars </li></ul><ul><li>Lowered job satisfaction </li></ul><ul><li>Creation of competing goals </li></ul><ul><li>Reduced productivity </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforces aggressive/ </li></ul><ul><li>defensive culture </li></ul><ul><li>May be effective in emergencies </li></ul>Accommodate Collaborate Compromise Avoid Compete
    30. 30. It is BEST to Compete When… <ul><li>The issues/outcomes are VERY important </li></ul><ul><li>When quick decisive action is needed </li></ul><ul><li>To protect yourself from those who take advantage of “nice guys” </li></ul>
    31. 31. If we COMPROMISE… <ul><li>We say: </li></ul><ul><li>“ How about you…and I’ll…?” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I know we need to hurry, so I would be willing to…” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I want to be fair. Why don’t we…and I’ll slightly change my suggestion to…” </li></ul><ul><li>The impact: </li></ul><ul><li>Satisfactory resolution </li></ul><ul><li>Can end conflict quickly </li></ul><ul><li>Maintains relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Both parties give up something/get something </li></ul><ul><li>Weaker/watered down solutions </li></ul><ul><li>Promotes a constructive culture until overused, then reverts to passive/defensive </li></ul>Accommodate Collaborate Compromise Avoid Compete
    32. 32. It is BEST to Compromise When… <ul><li>You need to temporarily settle complex issues </li></ul><ul><li>To find a workable solution when time is short </li></ul><ul><li>To break power struggles </li></ul><ul><li>To make small, positive steps forward </li></ul>
    33. 33. If We COLLABORATE… <ul><li>We say: </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’d like to hear your ideas and concerns about…” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’ve got an idea that could work…let’s see what you think about it” </li></ul><ul><li>“ It seems we both have strong emotions about this. Could we meet later to discuss this issue?” </li></ul><ul><li>The impact: </li></ul><ul><li>Outcomes are better than those achieved on own </li></ul><ul><li>Brings out creativity </li></ul><ul><li>Creates communication </li></ul><ul><li>High investment of time/energy </li></ul><ul><li>Can lead to frustration if a quick resolution is needed </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforces constructive culture </li></ul>Accommodate Collaborate Compromise Avoid Compete
    34. 34. It is BEST to Collaborate When… <ul><li>You need to learn new things or understand others </li></ul><ul><li>You want to synergize different viewpoints </li></ul><ul><li>You need to find a win/win solution on vital issues </li></ul><ul><li>Both relationships and issues are important </li></ul>
    35. 35. How do you make it work??
    36. 36. First, create a plan <ul><li>Reflect on the situation </li></ul><ul><li>What type of conflict is it? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Facts, Process, Purpose, Values </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What personality types are those involved? </li></ul><ul><li>What is my natural response to the conflict? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid, Accommodate, Compete, Compromise, Collaborate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Is this the best way? What might work better? </li></ul></ul>
    37. 37. First, no ambushes! Find a private setting and say that you would like to schedule a time to talk about this issue that concerns you both.
    38. 38. The Initial Encounter <ul><li>Words to use to start the conversation: </li></ul><ul><li>Always say : “Is this a good time to talk?” then… </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’ve noticed your ___ behavior toward me lately, specifically when ___. Can we talk about this?” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’ve been thinking about the way we work together. I would like your input.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ There have been some problems with the handling of ___. Can we set up a time for you tell me what you think is happening?” </li></ul>
    39. 39. Then when you meet…
    40. 40. Three Steps to Deal with Conflict <ul><li>Everyone tells it like they see it </li></ul><ul><li>Everything is put on the table </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on the future </li></ul>
    41. 41. Everyone Tells It Like They See It <ul><li>Remind them of why you are meeting – briefly! Then ask what they think </li></ul><ul><li>Ask questions to draw out the other’s side of the conflict </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Listen without judging </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid interrupting, blaming, arguing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Then paraphrase what you hear </li></ul></ul>
    42. 42. Everything Is Put On the Table <ul><li>Share your understanding of the conflict </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Present your case, NOT a rebuttal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get to the point </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus on the issue, not personalities/accusations/past encounters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include feelings, thoughts, observations </li></ul></ul>
    43. 43. Focus on the Future <ul><li>Ask for commitment to working out a solution </li></ul><ul><li>Create a mutual action plan </li></ul><ul><li>Follow up </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid all talk and no action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get an agreement in specifics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow through – do what you said you’d do </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Schedule an evaluation meeting </li></ul></ul>
    44. 44. Put It All Into Practice Conflict Resolution -Personal Action Plan
    45. 45. WHAT IT SOUNDS LIKE… Conflict: Lab Manager Steve ( tiger ) is so volatile that everyone is afraid to bring up anything of substance. They never know if there will be a blow up or thanks. The whole department is afraid and things are falling apart. ( cause of problem?? Process, purpose?) Method -collaborate –high relationship/high importance 1: Everyone tells it like they see it How will I start the conversation? (consider the source of the conflict and my approach) What will I do to remind myself to actively listen and avoid interrupting to share my perspective? How will I paraphrase what they say? What will I say to transition to the next step? Step 2: Everything is put on the table What will I say to share my understanding of the conflict? (remember my approach style) What will I do to keep my emotions in check? To stay objective, what facts, observations, and feedback can I provide? What can I say to ensure they have ‘heard’ what I have shared? What will I say to transition to the next step? Step 3: Focus on the future What will I ask to get commitment from them to work out a solution? What can I say/ask to brainstorm ideas, and then negotiate an action plan to resolve our conflict? Once we decide on a plan, what can I say to ensure specific So you have agreed to ….and I will … How will I ensure follow-up? What will I say to strengthen the relationship between us? Step 4: Anchor email thanking them for the useful, honest conversation
    46. 46. Some Useful Tips <ul><li>Words to use to buy time: </li></ul><ul><li>“ I hear what you’re saying and I would like some time to myself to think about this situation.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Bear with me, I am pretty upset.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’m glad you told me this, but I need to gather some information before we continue.” </li></ul>
    47. 47. Some Useful Tips <ul><li>Everyone tells it like they see it: </li></ul><ul><li>Use active listening skills </li></ul><ul><li>Make the situation safe for both of you </li></ul><ul><li>Set ground rules </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No interrupting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Permission to take notes </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Paraphrase what they have said before you give your perspective </li></ul>
    48. 48. Some Useful Tips <ul><li>Everything is put on the table: </li></ul><ul><li>Take responsibility </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use “I statements” not “you statements” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid blame </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be accountable for your actions </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Include feelings, facts, and perspectives </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Draw them out first </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Share yours </li></ul></ul>
    49. 49. Some Useful Tips <ul><li>Focus on the Future: </li></ul><ul><li>State what you need clearly and firmly </li></ul><ul><li>Get an agreement on specifics </li></ul><ul><li>Schedule some type of follow-up </li></ul>
    50. 50. Finally… <ul><li>Focus on issues, not personalities </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on the future, not the past </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on solutions, not blame </li></ul>
    51. 51. Recommended Reading <ul><li>Perlow, L. & Williams, S., (2003). Is silence killing your company?, Harvard Business Review, May 2003, 2-8 . </li></ul><ul><li>Williams, M.J., (1997). Don’t avoid conflicts – manage them. Harvard Management Update, July 1997, 1-5. Fisher R, Brown S. Getting Together: Building Relationships As We Negotiate. New York, New York;Penguin Books;1988. </li></ul><ul><li>Stone D, Patton B, Heen, S. Difficult Conversations. New York, New York; Penguin Putnam Inc., 1999. </li></ul><ul><li>Garman A, Fitz K, Frazer M. Communication and Relationship Management. </li></ul><ul><li>Journal of Healthcare Management 51(5):291-294, 2006. </li></ul><ul><li>Preseton P. Dealing with &quot;Difficult&quot; People. Journal of Healthcare Management 50(6)367-370, 2005. </li></ul><ul><li>Murphy T. The Effects of a Crowded Workplace on Morale and Productivity. </li></ul><ul><li>The Journal of Histotechnology 24(1)9-15, 2001. </li></ul><ul><li>Patteron, K, Grenny, J, McMillan, R, Switzler, A. Crucial Conversations: Tools for talking when stakes are high. New York, NY; McGraw-Hill, 2002. </li></ul>