The main goal of organizational work is solving problems and gaining agreement. Let’s take a look at how you can do that successfully.
Knowing what you and the other person really want is the key to resolving conflicts. What people say they want and what they really want is often not the same.
For example: You’re a manager and an employee says that he wants a promotion and the only available promotion was given to someone else. By digging deeper you find that the employee really wants responsibility and respect. Now there are many ways of achieving that want such as new projects or being put on a promotion track.
The key is to find many ways of achieving what you want and not just one way.
But people are not likely to just come right out and tell you what they really want. So you have to be clear about what you really want to start. You then have to find out what the other person really wants. And you do that by listening.
Sit back and let the person talk, not interrupt and paraphrase what they are saying. It’s no so hard once you block out extraneous thoughts. I have a list called “Listening Blocks” that list what we do when we don’t listen.
Listening is valuable because not only does it get you content, it builds trust. When there’s trust, people will tell you what they really want.
What you’re doing is changing the game by understanding what it is they really want and framing it in a way that you can both agree to solutions.
For example: An older colleague of mine was negotiating a pre-nuptial agreement with her soon to be husband. She was insisting on everything being community property. He was resisting and it was getting heated. I commented that older people usually don’t make everything community property. What was it that she really needed? She replied that she “Didn’t want to end up broke like her mother."
Since her future husband had more money than she did, I suggested that he could help her in other ways such as a hefty insurance policy. So I gave her an alternative.
Once she saw what she really needed, she became more flexible and many solutions popped up.
So listening, giving people a chance to speak their truth, acknowledgment, that’s really implicit to the rapport building process. You have to say somewhere along the line, ‘I hear you’re upset. What do you really want?’
point: Helping people say yes and make it hard for them to say no .
talking consequences to people. Not everything is resolvable and sometime you
need to walk away. A professional human resource colleague of mine worked very
hard on finding a solution to an employee’s dissatisfaction. Finally she said
“I’m sorry we can’t come to a resolution that you like. You seem to have two choices: stay and work for a company where you don’t respect the leadership; or leave and find a place where you do.”
The employee replied; “You’re right.” And got another job.