Schools Training

Conflict Resolution for Effective Teamwork

15 APR 2014
Career Path : Liberal Arts

It’s hard not to have a strong opinion about things these days – we all have access to so much information on the internet and have the ability to align ourselves with whatever personalities, opinions, ideas or thoughts we want, so it’s inevitable that there are going to be a bunch of unique and passionate people roaming the halls of any college or university. What this means is that collaborating on ideas and projects with team members can often result in a “more than the sum of its parts” scenario, where each member brings something to the table and the result is often much better than if it had been done by one person. However, problems can arise due to the inability of people to collaborate, the tendency to force opinions on others, and just general disinterest in accommodating other peoples’ opinions. However, conflict resolution skills are a great way to lessen the antagonism often felt in group settings, and Shimer College has a great blog post on how you can use conflict resolution skills to ensure a great team effort.

Connect means establishing an understanding or rapport with the other members of your team, addressing things openly and in a friendly manner. Clarify means you should actively listen to what the people in your team are saying, without judgement, and either find a way to incorporate their ideas or pose effective alternative solutions. Confirm is about trying to reach a mutual agreement in the group that means both the overall goal and individual needs or ideas of members are addressed and included. Finally contract is about the agreement of the individuals in the team about how the project or effort has come together, and the acknowledgment of individual roles and contributions.”