Productive Conflict: Offer Reassurance

Let’s do a hypothetical. Your team is working on developing new software for one of your top clients. They have some complicated stuff going on, and they need a better way to track what’s coming through the warehouses, what’s exiting, and where it’s going in real time. This is a big project and there’s a … Read more

Productive Conflict: Own Your Contributions

Have you ever heard the saying, “Nobody’s perfect?” Have you ever used that saying? How often do you use it? It’s probably one of the most popular things we say and/or think, because it’s true. But what does it mean to not be perfect? It means that we make mistakes. We fail at the tasks … Read more

Productive Conflict: Separate Emotion from Fact

I’m going to start with a story from my assistant DeAnne’s family: We enjoy having family nights on Friday nights. Sometimes those are movie nights and sometimes they are game nights. On this particular evening, it was game night, and we were playing a card game, Skip-Bo. We try to pick games that even the … Read more

Productive Conflict: Listen to Differing Perspectives

People who exchange perspectives tend to encourage dialogue around new ideas and information. In a dysfunctional situation, a leader may do the opposite; present information without room for discussion. I was part of a team once that had to select chaperones for an international youth trip. The chairman explained exactly how the selection had been made four years earlier. … Read more

Productive Conflict: Apologize

Nothing shows humility, grace, and vulnerability like a sincere apology. Note: I’m not talking about a non-apology or a rushed “I’m sorry.” I’m taking about real, sincere apologies that build trust, extinguish guilt, and provide healing. Examples of non-apologies: I’m sorry, but… I’m sorry you took it that way. Oh, yeah. Sorry about that. My … Read more

Productive Conflict: Finding the Root of the Problem

This week, we’re starting a new series on productive conflict behaviors. In a previous series, we looked at unproductive behaviors. You can find the first post in that series here. Going back to DiSC, some of these behaviors will come more naturally to you than others, depending on your style. For example, if you have … Read more