New Year’s Resolution = Conflict Resolution
It’s the end of 2017 and, of course, it’s time for 2018 resolutions!
What are your plans for 2018?
Here at the NC State Faculty & Staff Ombuds Office, we are working on our own resolutions (drink less coffee, eat a more balanced diet, get more sleep, help people solve more problems – the list goes on and on!!) yet there is one resolution we can make together.
Let’s choose an issue in our work life that’s causing us some difficulty and let’s do something about it!
In a program I present called “Conflict Leadership” I ask participants to think about how each of us approaches conflict using a framework developed by Ken Thomas and Ralph Kilman (Thomas Kilman Inventory of Conflict Styles) that includes five approaches – avoid, accommodate, compromise, compete, collaborate. All have merit and are absolutely good choices depending on the circumstances of the situation and the outcome desired. At the same time, we often don’t stop and think about our choices – we don’t anyalyze and think strategically about what our choice should be – we have a default preferred style and we go with it even if it doesn’t really fit our situation.
And, as you probably already know – the most popular conflict style is to avoid it! Again, this can be the right choice when the issue is trivial or it needs time for folks to calm down or if given time it will resolve itself. So, I’m not “anti” avoid; however, when we avoid work place issues these can grow to much bigger and more impactful problems.
Thus, make the following resolution for 2018 – pick a “smallish” work place issue that you’ve been avoiding, think about it, and decide if there is a way to do something about it – preferably to resolve it!
And, if you want some help contact the faculty & staff ombuds office and we’ll work on this resolution together!