Workplace conflict is common across all industries especially in a fast paced and stressful field like Nursing. Conflict mediation can be complex and typically Nurse managers step in to help resolve the problem.
Acoording to Nurse.com, conflict is a disagreement between two or more people who differ in attitudes, beliefs, values, feelings or needs. It’s a part of every work environment, including healthcare organizations. The ingredients of conflict include:
- Needs. These are essential to wellbeing; therefore, conflict can arise when needs are not met. Not to be confused with desires (what we would like), needs are vital elements.
- Perceptions. People interpret situations differently. Misperceptions can cause a breakdown in communication, leading to conflict.
- Power. How people define, interpret and use power can greatly influence conflict. Conflict may arise when one person seeks to influence or exert power over another.
- Values. Values are beliefs that a person deems important. Serious conflicts can occur when people hold incompatible values.
- Feelings and emotions. People often let emotions dictate how they react in a given circumstance. Conflict can arise when people let their feelings lead the way, or if another person’s feelings are ignored or devalued. It’s important to separate emotions from the issue.
Below are a few suggestions on how to best deal with workplace disputes and dilemmas.
Gather Info And Meet With Both Parties
Make sure you do your best to understand the entire situation before reacting. In many cases, getting the whole story will help alleviate the conflict immediately, as the problem can be more clearly identified and addressed appropriately.
Journalist Susan M. Heathfield from The Balance, believes meeting both parties separately is unwise because Nurse managers run the risk of becoming biased to one opinion. The most effective way to resolve conflict is for managers to discuss the incident with both parties in the same room, affording them both an equal amount of time to state their case. This approach promotes fairness and balance, more effectively paving the way for a peaceful resolution.
Conflict Resolution Training
Hire The Right People For Your Team
Effective healthcare systems management relies on hiring the right people for your culture and workplace. When hiring employees, consider whether they have a proven history of efficiency and teamwork. Ask questions around what they would do in specific situations involving conflict, and listen to the way they describe how they have managed similar occurrences they’ve dealt with in the past.
Conflict can’t be avoided, but it can be solved. Although avoidance sometimes seems like the easy way out, facing conflict head-on in an appropriate and professional manner will lead to better relationships, a more productive work environment and empowerment. We hope these suggestions help with any future conflicts that may arise.
What has helped you solve a conflict at work? Comment below and tell us what has worked for you in the past.