Communications: The Basis for Conflict, A Keynote at PIE 2022


Communications: The Basis for Conflict, A Keynote at PIE 2022

Isn’t it great to have life (mostly) back to normal? Gathering again with friends and loved ones, seeing the smiling faces of others up close and personal – I’m betting you missed this type of interaction as much as I did! Over the last two years, many of us switched to working remotely, exclusively interacting with colleagues in a virtual setting. As the world began to reopen, most of us headed back to a communal office setting. While working side by side with co-workers provides us with greater opportunities to collaborate, there’s a little dark cloud that can potentially rain down on our professional lovefest: conflict between members of the team. 

Conflict is an inevitable part of all human relationships. That’s a given. No matter how awesome your workplace is, very few of us can surround ourselves only with people whose opinions, thoughts, and communication style perfectly align with our own. Simply put, conflict at work is predictable and unavoidable. If we accept this as true, is it hopeless? Is there something we can do to diminish the drama and avoid conflict due to miscommunication? 

Communication style can go a long way to both avoiding conflicts and resolving them. Not everyone perceives situations and experiences the same. As an example, I may believe we’re having a lively discussion while you think I’m communicating in a disrespectful way. It’s really all about perceptions, isn’t it? Miscommunication can lead us to make incorrect assumptions about the motivations and intent of others. Learning to adapt communication styles to your situation can be the key to avoiding these miscommunications.   

The first step is recognizing that we each have a personal and habitual way of dealing with conflict that can take over when we’re under pressure. Our style has been developing and evolving over our lifetime. When we can identify our own communication style and adjust it based on the communication style and needs of the person we may be interacting with, the potential for everyone’s needs being met substantially increases. 

To overcome conflict, it’s critical to understand how your communication style forms the image others have of you, and in turn, the image of your organization. This session is intended to help you better understand the effect your communication style can have on others, both personally and professionally. Along with a brief assessment of your personal communication style, we’ll also examine the long-lasting consequence of first impressions, discuss the effects of a low mood quotient, and talk about the four sources of conflict we encounter at work. 

I’m excited to be sharing this interactive, lively, and revealing opening session at the 2022 PIE Show. 

Monday, May 16

Article contributed by:
Cindy Campbell
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