The 7 steps to conflict Resolution
1. Develop an attitude of resolution.
- Take a deep breath and count to ten.
- Think about the conflict and what gave
rise to it.
- Instead of seeing yourself as a victim,
think about your own behavior.
2. Set the stage, plan your approach
- If you are still angry, find a safe place and
person with whom you can vent your anger
and get some honest, objective feedback.
- Think through what you want to accomplish
and create a vision of a desired outcome.
- Mentally “see” this outcome as benefiting
both parties and an image of both walking
3. Arrange a place and time to talk
- The ability to focus is important.
- Sometimes it is useful to find an environment
different from the setting where the conflict
4. Tell your stories, gain an understanding of the
- Ask the person to relate her side of the conflict
- Then, tell your story.
5. Listen actively and with empathy
- Look directly at the person
- Make eye-to-eye contact
- Nod occassionaly
- Sit quietly
- Speak only for clarification
- Summarize key points
As a person tells his story and perceives he is
being heard, tension tends to decrease and
real dialogue begins.
6. Generate solutions and a shared, win-win
vision of resolution.
- Explore and be creative in searching
7. Test for satisfaction
- Ask each party if the solution works for them.
Key Principles in Resolving
Take shared responsibility for the conflict
Recognize and appreciate differences
Preserve individual dignity
Listen carefully and with empathy, listen to
understand, communicate, don’t debate.
Vulnerability is a key to successful
resolution, therefore open up and share
Don’t assume people are being difficult
Choose a safe place or person with whom
you can vent and clarify the issues for
Generate solutions…find agreement
Follow-up to assure resolution and modify as
Diagram: The 7 steps to conflict
To resolve a Conflict What to Say or Do? Why?
1. Calm yourself Take a deep breath Clears thinking,
2. Restore order Take a time out Stops the fight
3. Hear their stories “Help me understand
4. Listen carefully Eye contact, don’t
Honors the need to be
5. Generate solutions “How could we resolve
6. Agree on a solution “Would this work for
Moves to resolution,
7. Test for satisfaction “Are you sure this will
work for you?”
Key Points to Remember
Be a model of calm and control
Don’t give in to emotional outbursts
Don’t assume people are intentionally
Find a quiet and private place to resolve
No raising of voices
Speak only for yourself… “I” phrases
Confront the issues not the people