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A Leaders Guide To Conflict Intervention

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Leading a team of diverse people, from different cultures and educational backgrounds can be a difficult task. The differences and specialties of the team improve its ability to provide unique solutions to business problems. But different mindset and work attitude can cause a rift between employees, which can lead to a toxic work environment.

According to a survey, around 60 to 80 percent of organizational problems stem from poor employee relationship.

As a manager, you can’t step in whenever there’s an altercation. You need to enable your team to an extent that they can resolve an infraction in a positive way.

When conflicts are approached in the right manner, it maintains productivity and cohesiveness of the team. Your goal should be to limit the need of leadership in conflict resolution, but you need to keep a hawk-eye on your team to prevent conflict from damaging employee productivity.

When Should A Leader Step-In?

Diagnose the situation

Determine the severity of the conflict. Ask yourself these questions; will this conflict impact the bottom-line of the business? Does it have the potential to turn into workplace violence? Or is it just a small disagreement?  Determine the cause of the difference in your team. It can be a difference of opinion, working style, leadership, personality, or values.

What do you expect from your team?

When dealing with a conflicting issue, determine a common goal. Do you want your team to reach a mutual agreement, a compromise, or a unique solution? Setting a clear goal will let you decide if intervention is needed or not.

Identify opportunity

Every conflict is an opportunity to learn and expand horizons. Make sure your team treats it like a learning opportunity, instead of dreadful ordeal.

Focus on the positive outcomes, and motivate your team to do the same. When your team is stuck in an impasse, take a step back and evaluate the situation. See if the situation can be used to venture into new territory.


An average manager spends up to 25 to 40 percent of his/her time dealing with workplace conflicts. You need to gauge the extent of productivity loss before stepping-in as a mediator. A manager’s intervention may be required in the following cases.

  • A huge impact on productivity
  • Increase in absenteeism
  • A sudden, yet obvious change in employee behavior
  • Increase in hostility in workplace
  • If an employee asks for help
  • If the conflict is jeopardizing the business
  • Conflict persists even after correct mitigation procedure has been followed

A manager plays a crucial role is conflict management. Equip yourself with the right tools and management techniques with help of DFRI.

We are an expert HR advisory service provider that helps build strong employer-employee relationships. We also provide HR outsourcing services, and formulate and execute comprehensive and strategic solutions for variety of businesses. Call 1-877-803-3486 to learn more about our services.