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Work can be stressful enough, so most of the time, we try to avoid conflict with our co-workers, but a fear or avoidance of confrontation is actually unproductive for the company.”realise that conflict can be productive and make an effort to embrace it. Expect to be challenged on your ideas.,” Yum! Brands CEO David Novak says in his book Taking People With You: The Only Way to Make Big Things Happen
Novak says “the road to real alignment is often paved with conflict,” so eliminating it would, inevitably, also discourage valuable ideas and opinions that naturally accompany the brainstorming sessions.
Confrontation in the workplace is bound to happen, but depending on how you deal with it will make it constructive or destructive. If you’re in a leadership position, Novak says that you should know it’s OK if everyone in the board meeting is yelling at one another, but also make sure you manage these debates, especially if they start to get heated. In the book, the CEO says:
“While avoiding conflict is bad, conflict that degenerates into pointless or hateful argument is even worse for team morale. Let people get into it, but also recognise when some are getting uncomfortable or the high level of discord has gotten too high. Bring people’s focus back to the fact that the purpose here is to debate and solve. Your willingness to get things out in the open and take on the fight will differentiate you as a leader. It takes courage, but it’s worth it.”
The bottom line for any company is to come up with the best solution for the company — even if it involves some productive conflict.
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