Successful CEOs have to know how to manage a range of people, and that includes defusing tense situations and helping employees work together. Across all industries, easing conflict is important to creating a healthy office environment, and the Harvard Business Review recently provided several ways that chief executives should enforce good relationships by negotiating conflict.
What's notable about these examples is that they draw from various industries: Doctors, educators and politicians all have to work with disagreements, as do the members of any corporation. Participants should focus on what's important and not draw out conflicts unnecessarily. In addition, incidents where teams end up coming together to surpass personal differences make a significant mark on a CEO tenure and are good experiences leaders can draw from in the future.
For example, focusing on the common beliefs and goals of disagreeing employees helps to bridge gaps and reduce anger. Author and professor Jeffrey Pfeffer calls this empathetic understanding.
"It helps to understand what others' objectives and measures are, which requires looking at the world through their eyes," he said. "Don't presume evil or malevolent intent." Pfeffer says that different departments will have their own goals and should learn to understand that instead of antagonizing each other.
Once employees have this understanding, they will start to respect each other and be more open to collaboration. CEOs set a good example when they do things like compliment workers for good performance and devote equal time and support to all co-worker needs.
It takes a conscious effort to get all employees working on the same page, and executives who focus on engagement are good fits for workplaces where conflict is an issue.
Finding people is easy, but finding the RIGHT people is not. YES Partners helps companies FIND the right people – for all company functions, across many industries and globally.