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Why Avoiding Conflict Is a Game Changer for Productivity in the Workplace

As many of us know all too well, an important part of maintaining productivity in the workplace has to deal with conflict. This is because it’s not good for any relationship to go unchallenged. Once you let something fester unresolved, it can easily turn into resentment and frustration, which will invariably lead to less productivity. However, if this doesn’t mean much to you at the moment, maybe seeing how having resolved conflicts leads directly to increased profit margins might get your attention:

Statistics show that workplace productivity increases by 50% just from resolving a problem and reaching a solution once and for all (Brookfield Partners).

This post we’re going to take a closer look at why avoiding conflict doesn’t really help us accomplish our goals – and how resolving conflict is a much more effective approach for achieving our workplace and personal goals.

Let’s take a look:

Why Avoiding Conflict Is A Game Changer For Productivity In The Workplace – Avoiding Change Has Serious Negative Effects:

It can be very difficult to change something that we’re used to; we like the way things are, so why try and fix it? Well as explored in depth by Dr. Robert Puff in his book ‘The Breakthrough Challenge’, avoiding change has serious negative effects.   These include   Doubting our capacities    Fear of failure     Guessing who will emerge as a winner from those who have been engaged in conflict     Embarrassment at being involved with dispute or dislike over difference     Losing time that could have been put into more profitable activities    Feeling embarrassed or ashamed of the outcome

Although avoiding conflict may seem like a good idea, our brains are actually wired to resist change. Once it becomes clear that there are potential positive outcomes from changing the status quo, the brain will start to find ways of achieving these new goals. To do this, it can draw on our memories and past experiences too – making us better equipped for future challenges.

The Benefits Of Resolving Conflict Can Work For All Parties Involved:

It’s not just our own individual productivity which will improve when we resolve conflicts; according to research by Dr. Emmanuel Felton in his essay ‘How Business Conflict Resolution Creates Value’, resolving conflicts between multiple parties provides even greater benefits.

The study found that employers were more willing to buy products or services from companies that resolved disputes with other vendors in the past (which suggests they’re likely to be profitable and productive) than those who had not.   Better still, having a reputation for resolving conflict builds trust within your business network too. This means you have increased access to resources when needed, so it will lead you to being more productive.  You can find out more about how this works in Dr. Felton’s essay here.

How to Avoid Conflict Before It Gets Out Of Hand:

It’s important to remember that conflict isn’t all bad, because it can actually help us build relationships at work over time. However if conflict is left unresolved it can become a serious obstacle to our productivity workplace; we need to understand how it works and what we can do to reduce the negative effects of not resolving it.

Luckily, there are several strategies that can help you avoid conflict before it gets out of hand, including:

Understand Why You’re Avoiding Conflict In The First Place: It’s important to identify why you’re avoiding conflict in the first place if you want to resolve existing problems. If this isn’t done, then any attempts at resolving conflicts will be weak or ill-informed. After all, how good a decision is going to be when the problem has been misdiagnosed? Maintain Good Rapport With Others: Having a good rapport with people in your business network means that you’re able to maintain an open channel of communication. This means people are more willing to talk to you when they have problems, or if they notice any opportunities which can help you improve your business processes (and therefore productivity).

If the rapport is good, then there’s likely to be less conflict between individuals too workplace.   Acknowledge The Signs Of Conflict Early On : The earlier we acknowledge that a problem exists, the better placed we’ll be at resolving it; after all taking action early can prevent matters from spiraling out of control. Persuade With Facts And Logic: When plugging away at a problem, it’s important to appeal to solid rational arguments and apply cold hard facts to the debate. By doing this, we make ourselves appear more logical and effective, so people will be more likely to accept our ideas.

Productive conflict as an ally to leadership

Refereeing is an ability all colleagues ought to have. Yet, it’s particularly significant for turning into an extraordinary pioneer. Compelling pioneers connect with numerous sorts of individuals inside their group and association. On account of our disparities as people, struggle is unavoidable. Pioneers should have the option to change negative struggle into useful clash. Without viable peace making abilities, group connections can separate. Rather than smothering clash, pioneers ought to advance useful struggle. They ought to instruct their group on the benefit of welcoming struggle as opposed to closing it down.Pioneers ought to likewise urge groups to observe their own useful struggle process. This enables groups and gives them more prominent independence to track down arrangements. Useful clash permits pioneers to develop solid connections inside their associations. Empowering transparent talk fortifies representative relations and advances more noteworthy efficiency.

Recognize the kind of contention: helpful versus disastrous

We’ve effectively addressed the inquiry, “what is useful or helpful struggle?” But what is disastrous clash? Horrendous struggle is when contentions are driven by hostility rather than goal. This sort of a conflict is useless and frustrates a group’s development. The two sorts of contention include banter over contrasts of assessment. Yet, the principle distinction is the result. Useful clash centers around tracking down an answer. It prompts a positive outcome that everything colleagues can resolve to, regardless of whether they totally concur with it. With disastrous struggle, an arrangement isn’t reached, and nobody benefits. This sort of contention harms the usefulness of an association. It debilitates connections and can cause dread and doubt.

Set a positive twist on useful clash

Struggle inside the work environment shouldn’t be kept away from however invited. The distinctions between its individuals fortify the group. Staying away from all contention might keep groups from developing and arriving at their maximum capacity. At the point when struggle is fumbled, it can hurt the connections and development of a group. In any case, when dealt with in a conscious way, struggle gives an open door to development.What’s significant is recognizing which struggle is destructive and which is useful. The following stage is to embrace useful struggle. Thusly, you can develop your functioning connections from one solidarity to another. Reach out to a BetterUp mentor to assist you with making the most out of useful struggle.


If you have ever felt the ‘sting’ of conflict with another individual or group of individuals, then you know how it feels to be productive. If there are problems in your business network that are preventing others from being as productive as they could be , then resolving these issues is likely to make them far more responsive.


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