Conflict Management Training
Conflict Management Training Objectives

* The Purpose of Conflict
* Getting to the Heart of the Problem
* Dealing with Uncomfortable Feelings
* Defining a Difficult Person
* Using Honesty and Agreement
* Turning Arguments into Discussions
* Defusing Blame
* Active Listening and Responding
* Understanding the Roles People Play
* Achieving a Different Outcome
* Dealing with Strong Feelings
* Delivering Bad News
* Feeding the Solution Not the Problem
* Creating Win-Win: Achieving Resolution

Conflict Management and Difficult People

'Yes, but not today' is how people usually feel about conflict management. Not surprisingly we all feel that we need to prepare to manage conflict or people who we find difficult.

Most people see conflict as indicative of a problem. Disagreement feels uncomfortable and threatening.

When there's no open conflict we can carry on as though things are all right even if we know they aren't.

The main reason to engage in conflict is to reach a resolution. Without resolution, conflict merely becomes an opportunity to recycle old arguments and disagreements.

Conflict Resolution

With resolution, conflict can be rewarding and exciting and can move things forward.

Conflict Management and Difficult People has a mixture of theory and practical exercises designed to help delegates constructively engage with conflict rather than avoid it.

Just about every company in the world has, on occasion, a problem with conflict among its people, or conflict that its people have to deal with externally. Indeed, there are many companies where conflict arises a lot.

Your company may need people to get on with each other better and not get bogged down in arguments and tensions that disrupt the flow of work. You may simply need some of your staff to be able to manage conflict with more panache, or even instigate conflict management if necessary.

Really Difficult People

Some areas of your company may have to deal with really difficult people both internally and externally: tricky suppliers, others who let you down and give you a briefcase full of excuses, outright nasties who make people's lives a misery.

Although not every conflict has an easy-to-achieve resolution, most do, it's just that in our experience, people are more adept at avoiding conflict than seeing what needs to be done to resolve it.

Our Conflict Management Training will give your people usable, relevant and confidence building tools to help them handle this difficult arena more effectively

What types of Conflict Resolution are there?
I win You lose
You win I lose
No one wins
We both lose
We both win
We get to go round again

Conflict Management can actually be exciting and rewarding. It can be a chance to get to the heart of a problem, rather than only focusing on the surface or obvious issues. Most conflicts have core causes and once those are addressed, conflict management becomes an option to choose rather than run away from.

Dealing with Conflict
Here we look at what happens to delegates in conflict situations, including how they approach with it and deal with any 'fallout'.

To begin we'll recreate a "conflict" situation just to demonstrate the feelings it can create both in ourselves and in others and how this affects what we do and what we say.

We also look at why, as is very common, many people avoid dealing with it at all.

Delegates will look at a recent situation where they either avoided conflict and what happened, or handled it badly, and what happened.

So Who Is a Difficult Person?
We outline the styles of behaviour that delegates find difficult to deal with. We look at how each delegate defines their own difficult person/people and what happens when they engage (or avoid) conflict with that person or people.

What Might Happen in Conflict Situations?
We touched on the 'fallout' earlier, but here we look at the delegate's biggest fears around having difficult conversations or dealing with a difficult person.

Why is the conversation difficult? Is it because you really have to deliver bad news, or is it because you're frightened of the other person's reaction.

How has this stopped you from effective conflict management?
Have You Been Someone Else's Difficult Person?
Delegates are asked to identify a situation where they may have been someone else's difficult person.

What did it feel like?
How did they approach you?
How did you respond?
Was it resolved, and if so, how?

Other things that add to Conflict Difficulty
Here we look at a range of things including:

Avoiding conflict as much as possible
'Evidence collecting' to prove your opinion
Talking to the wrong people
Being right while the other person is wrong
Letting them have it between the eyes

Managing Conflict and Moving Difficult Situations Forward
Here we start to look at a range of options, these include:

Figuring out what's really going on
Deal with things as they arise
Avoid blaming
Build bridges
Set clear boundaries
You don't have to go it alone
Stop colluding
Or... if the conversation defies resolution - is walking away an option?

We move on to explore some models and techniques that may be helpful:

"I Understand Where You're Coming From"
This exercise demonstrates the effect of seeing the conflict from the other person's point of view.

Emotion vs. Objectivity: "So What You're Saying Is..."
A pairs exercise that allows people calm down an over-emotional person without getting drawn in.

Listening and Responding with Empathy
This exercise allows the other person to be heard and get their point of view across while allowing you to set clear boundaries and deliver a difficult or uncomfortable message.

The Best Defence is a Good Offence
Or is it?

Here we look at two different approaches and how we can avoid the knee jerk reactions a person can display when they feel blamed or attacked.
Uncovering Hidden Agendas
Conflict Management can be even worse when there are additional hidden agendas. This is a simple technique of how to 'call the behaviour' of the other person without accusation or making the other person wrong. This sounds trickier than it is!

Delivering Difficult Messages
A technique to help people distinguish between what someone does as opposed to who they are. This can be extremely helpful when you have to deliver news the recipient doesn't want to hear.

Creating Win-Win: Maintaining Relationships
Here we look at how you say what needs to be said, yet avoid conflict; how you can ask someone to do something for you or refuse to do something for them and still maintain a positive relationship; how you can deal with the person you find most difficult on a regular basis and have things move smoothly along.

Useful and Defusing Phrases
Here we will introduce some of the phrases we have collected over the years that help defuse tricky situations.

Dealing with Difficult Styles and Reactions
What To Do If

Here we return to the lists we created earlier in the day and delegates will get to discuss and practice how they would deal with some of their conflict management situations using the awareness and material from the day.

We will look at:

Defusing conflict before it escalates
Getting clear about what outcome you want
How to feed the solution, not the problem
Knowing when to leave things well alone
Making offers
Three Wins to them and they owe you one
Changing or letting go of your want
Adjudicating between other people's arguments

How Do I Let Go of a Conflict?
Having had one difficult encounter, it can be really hard to let go of all the feelings, frustrations and residue of that, before you are able face the next difficult or tricky situation with a clean slate as it were. We know that it's very easy to metaphorically 'kick the cat'.

We have a brief 'in your head' exercise that demonstrates how powerful feelings can be, even when they aren't verbally expressed. We also look at how our feelings influence our assumptions, where we make things up and then act as though what we made up is true.

Here is an opportunity for the whole group to brainstorm about different conflict management techniques and tools they know work to deal with their own angry, upset or frustrated feelings.

Conflict Management Summary and Personal Take Out
Each person will identify

What they are taking away from the Conflict Management course

What specifically they know they will use
Where they will practise

Course length 2 -  2 hr. sessions Cost $120 per person, max. number on course 11 people

Talk to us about this course
If you want to know more about this public customer service course or its suitability for you or a colleague Email us with your details and we will call you

There are few fantasies in life that are more potent than the "if only" ones. And there are few "if only" fantasies that are as strong as "If only he/she weren't so bloody difficult then my life would be so much better."

This conflict management course helps you understand that the solution lies with you, not them. Changing what you do, what you say and how you say it, you will create changes in the other person. Even if you don't always get what you want, you will be driving what happens between the two of you, not them.