How to avoid confrontation at work

It’s inevitable for tempers to flare in the workplace. This could be anything from a clash of personalities, to somebody just having a bad day and taking out on others.

However, what’s important is to try to avoid confrontation all together. The last thing you need is to be embroiled in it all and get yourself into trouble in the process. Worse still, you don’t want to cause yourself any unnecessary work-related stress.

It’s important to recognise that even if it does end up involving you in some way, how you react to and handle the situation is a lot more important than the initial argument and eventual resolution. Especially if you want to impress your boss.

In this blog, we’ll look at the ways to avoid confrontation at work and focus on your own successes.

Be the bigger person

If you do somehow end up in the middle of a conflict, as cliché as it sounds, you need to be the bigger person. Regardless of what the situation is, rising above it is crucial. After all, you don’t want to get dragged further and further into it.

The best way you can do this is to imagine your best self. This involves thinking about the qualities your employer has admired about you since your interview, such as positivity, problem solving and teamwork.

If you maintain positivity in the face of adversity, you’re more likely to gain brownie points. Your boss will recognise that you clearly aren’t getting involved and are trying to make sure the negative energy doesn’t spread further around the workplace.

Do NOT take sides

This is something we should have all learnt in the playground. When colleagues are at loggerheads, the fallout can be messy. The worst possible scenario is when they ask you to pick a side.

Emotional manipulation is the last thing you need. Not only is this clearly unfair, but it can tear you apart from other colleagues who might not even intentionally be a part of it.

It’s often the case that taking sides will only fan the flames and cause an even bigger rift. Try and listen to both sides, but don’t construct an opinion on either. That way, it shows you’re a good listener and have the ability to not believe one person over another. This is something your employer will also pick up on.

Work out what’s important

Confrontation at work can spark from anywhere. It could be anything from idle gossip or personality clashes. Either way, any form of all conflict should never take priority over your actual job.

It’s best to acknowledge that minor disagreements should be figured out and forgotten. They will soon blow over, so just wait for the storm in a teacup to pass on and everything will go back to normal.

What’s also more important is how successful you are in your role in spite of it. This is what you get paid for after all. Letting arguments affect your working day ultimately makes you look bad as an employee.

Focus on your daily tasks and routine as much as possible; regardless of how long the drama goes on for. The more you stick at your job, the more reliable and professional you look.

Be introspective afterwards

Whether you’re directly involved in work conflict or not, each experience of it is a learning curve for everyone. It’s how you handle everything that goes on that matters.

If it gets to a point where it’s really bothering you, there’s no shame in speaking to your boss or even HR. In the meantime, the way you act has to be as positive and professional as possible. This can help towards creating a positive work environment.

Each confrontation at work is an opportunity for growth in terms of confidence, work ethic and even your own personality. As hard as it is, if you maintain a positive outlook throughout, you’ll come out the better person. Your employers will notice that more than anyone else will and behaving and reacting accordingly will only boost your moral further.

Avoid confrontation at work

Confrontation at work is unfortunately likely to happen. It’s part and parcel to working life. But if you deal with the drama in a way that will portray you in a positive note, you’ll come out as the bigger person.

About the author: Emma Gullon is a guest blogger for CV-Library. As well as writing advisory blogs here, she also has her own blog, Curious Reviews, in which she writes reviews on theatre shows in the Yorkshire area.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

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