Conflict occurs in a multitude of contexts. It may be two colleagues who seem unable to work together, a poorly handled customer complaint, a serious accusation of fraud or incompetence or a team that has split into factions.
Conflict has a habit of drawing in resources, compromising performance and taking up valuable time, all of which have significant human and financial costs.
Organisations that invest in conflict prevention are characterised by having:
- A robust set of policies and procedures to handle everything from whistleblowing through customer feedback to grievance resolution
- Confidential helplines to capture and manage whistleblowing claims and to support employees who are affected by conflict
- Trained individuals to help the victims of bullying and harassment to decide how they wish to handle their situations
- An external or in-house team of trained mediators to deal with conflict quickly and skilfully
- Trained investigators to carry out HR investigations in a timely and professional manner
- Management development programmes that include the soft skills involved in defusing conflict, dealing with difficult people and achieving positive results from difficult conversations
- Highly trained customer feedback professionals, who are skilled in dealing with complaints and empowered to improve the customer experience