Effective Leadership Styles
What makes an effective leader?
August 14, 2018

Can Conflict at Work Be Good for Business?

Well, there are a few reasons why.

Most of us have had our fair share of disagreements or conflicts with employees at work. It’s not like we all share the same brain – so yes, it’s bound to happen from time to time. But wait – is it possible that these work conflicts could be doing more good… than harm? Absolutely, it is! While you may feel that hitting professional roadblocks with your team can only be destructive for business, the opposite is true. (Provided you aren’t at each other’s throats every minute… which is an entirely different story). With that being said, I want to share with you my top three reasons why conflict in the workplace can be conducive to a healthy, productive business environment:

1. It encourages healthy communication.

Conflict at work prompts thoughtful discussions among team members, or in other words; encourages healthy communication that is necessary for a business to thrive. Without a healthy flow of conversation at the workplace, there will also be a disrupted flow of productivity and synergism. Every employee should be working closely with one another to ensure that tasks are being performed properly for clients and customers. The more communication flowing around the workplace (as a result of conflict or not), is fostering of a more productive work atmosphere. And with you acting as a mediator rather than a panjandrum picking sides, you’ll be helping to build trust while mastering the role of a well-respected boss. Kudos to that!

2. It encourages different (and forward) thinking.

When we get caught up in our own thoughts, it can be easy for us to forget about the value of listening to others. When you get to hear the opposing and varying views of your team members, it helps to open up your mind to possibilities that you never considered yourself. An employee’s new business strategy suggestion might make more sense for the company than the one you had settled on, or vice-versa. Focus on deviating away from an ego-centric or closed-minded way of thinking. Several minds working together are certainly better than one!

3. Finally, it leads to the ultimate resolution of these conflicts – and the progression of your business.

Healthy conflicts put the gears in motion to finally achieving their solutions as a team, which is critical for the success of your business. And when you’re a team that has experience with problem-solving, then you’ll be all the more equipped to take on workplace dilemmas of the future in an efficient and positive way – because, let’s face it, there will be many more!

The Bottom Line:

Experiencing conflicts at work means that you and your team care. And caring is good. Really good. Especially for business! So, the next time an issue at work arises between staff members, or between yourself and your employees, don’t stress – but rather, take it as an opportunity to strengthen your business. Hold a meeting and encourage everyone to express their thoughts and provide suggestions – but be sure to do this before tension builds up to potentially dangerous levels, where you and your employees could become too emotionally invested (…and not the good emotions). Remember… excellent communication and healthy conflict resolution skills are fundamental to creating a thriving business environment. Wishing your business the healthiest of conflicts!

- Janice Quigg