June 01, 2010

Why Bosses Avoid Conflict

Mediator and author (Conflict Resolution at Work For Dummies) Vivian Scott observes that some managers have a special knack for looking the other way when it comes to bad behavior and conflict on the job. She suggests there are four possible explanations.

  1. Can’t Find Starting Line -- Some managers feel overwhelmed with the complicated details and aren't open to sorting through who said what and who did what to whom and why they did it.
  2. Doesn’t Want to Look Bad -- Some managers think that if they keep quiet about the problems on their team no one will be the wiser.
  3. Has “Real Work” to do -- Some managers may feel that personnel squabbles are secondary to her or his primary objectives.
  4. Can’t See the Problem -- Some bosses lack perspective on issues that are important to subordinates.
For each of these situations, Scott offers straight forward suggestions on how to get the boss more engaged in conflict resolution. Perhaps a worthy seminar for your organization. (Mediate.com.)

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