Resolving conflict in the workplace is never an easy task, especially when problems occur at an executive level. But coming to a solution doesn’t have to be a struggle every time an issue arises. This blog will help you manage conflicts amongst executives more effectively, giving you some top tips on handling even the most disgruntled employees.
If conflicts escalate, it’s never a bad idea to bring in some executive employment lawyers to help things proceed more smoothly. It’s always helpful to have a professional cast their eye over a situation and offer some much-needed legal advice. But before this happens, here are some ways you can try to resolve conflicts on your own:
Sometimes simply listening carefully to the problem at hand can help you develop a suitable solution, especially if all the parties involved are present. Choose an impartial third party to chair the discussion, ideally someone from HR, and encourage executives to come to a compromise. Because executive-level conflicts can be complex and often involve shares and high-level decision making, it never hurts to have a solicitor present too.
Thoughts can easily be lost in translation, especially if the parties involved express themselves emotionally. It can be good to ask executives to prepare an argument beforehand that clearly states their views. Because of the level of the employees involved, this will likely prompt them to think much more coherently than when the conflict first arose.
Understand individual positions
If your executive-level conflict occurs between board members and shareholders, it’s important to understand that each person has different interests. While it might seem like everyone should want the same result, in actual fact, different members of the company will have their preferred outcomes in mind. Once you understand everyone’s intentions, finding a resolution will be much easier.
Suggest a compromise
It’s challenging to keep everyone completely happy all of the time, so sometimes, a compromise is in order. Try to identify the key issues at hand and look for ways that executives can meet in the middle. Is there a way to free up finances to pursue a particular course of action? Or perhaps shares could be allocated more fairly in future? Whatever the problem, there are ways for people to feel more content with a bit of careful problem-solving.
Once you’ve resolved a conflict, try and be proactive so that you can avoid similar problems in the future. Try to understand why the conflict arose in the first place and take steps to change your internal processes if necessary. While it’s impossible to anticipate all forms of conflict, having a set resolution procedure in place can help to move the dispute along much more quickly.
Nobody likes being faced with executive-level conflict, but sometimes it’s unavoidable. Make sure your HR and legal team are up to the job of tackling even the most complex scenarios.
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