08 Nov What’s wrong with us?

There’s this problem in the workplace and maybe you can relate to it?

According to an HC Online article, 98% of HR leaders find themselves with the regular and arduous task of handling conflict at work. Conflict is increasing turnover, sick leave and absenteeism not to mention legal costs. Plus it causes a decrease in productivity and job satisfaction.

A 2012 survey by Employee Development Systems (EDS) found that 81% of HR professionals have experienced an employee resigning as a result of conflict, and 77% have seen it result in increased absenteeism.

After canvassing the experiences of more than 350 HR professionals, the survey concluded that common root causes of workplace conflict included:

  • Warring egos and personality clashes (86%)
  • Poor leadership (73%)
  • Lack of honesty (67%)
  • Stress (64%)
  • Clashing values (59%)

From my “influence” perspective the problem is obvious.  The more time you spend in first position (in your own shoes), the more ego centric and selfish you become. The more selfish you become the less you care about other people’s needs and the more you just do what you do because you don’t think (or care) about the consequences.  And most of us live in first position 24/7 – even if we think we are the nicest, most fabulous, caring individual that ever walked the earth. Yes, sorry, it’s true!

The same EDS survey quoted here found that when conflict is handled effectively, it can actually become a catalyst for positive changes in organisations. The survey found that among organisations in which HR has effectively resolved conflict, 57% have seen better ongoing problem solving, 31% increased motivation, 77% more tolerance of others, and 40% an increase in overall team performance.

Some personal development training in how to think about issues from your colleague’s point of view, in other words to see a situation from a variety of perspectives, will dramatically reduce situations of conflict, misunderstanding and dissatisfaction in your life. This problem can be solved. Contact me!