EnglishMarch 28, 20230

Resolving Conflicts in Your Team: Key Strategies for a Productive Workplace

Resolving Conflicts in Your Team: Key Strategies for a Productive Workplace
Something like a conflict-free workplace is rare to find. People clash at work: they disagree on how to introduce a new IT system; there are different views on which sales strategy to pursue or there are turf wars over who should lead the website redesign project.
However, it is important to recognise that conflict in teams or groups is normal and can even be positive. Conflicts can be productive if they are dealt with constructively. Below I describe some key points you can consider to help resolve conflicts in your team:


Address conflicts early

Address conflicts early on, before they escalate. Bring the affected team members together to discuss their perspectives and find a solution together. Encourage open communication. It is important to create an open communication climate within the team and between the team and supervisors. Offer regular team meetings and informal discussions to facilitate such an open and trusting work environment. Create a space for each team member to freely express perspective and opinion.


Recognise cultural differences

Each member of the team brings their own cultural perspective and working methodology. Take time to understand and appreciate these differences. Raise the team’s awareness of cultural differences and foster a respectful understanding of each other.


Establish Psychological Safety

Psychological Safety is the term used to describe a working atmosphere in which people can express themselves and be themselves. In practical terms, this means that employees feel psychologically safe at work, feel encouraged to express their concerns and report mistakes without fear of being devalued or punished for it. It is about creating a climate of trust where employees can share their opinions, ideas and concerns without fear of negative consequences. By building this security, you also prevent employees from retreating into “inner resignation”.



Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Psychological Safety are closely linked. DE&I goes beyond Psychological Safety and refers to how an organisation promotes diversity, equity and inclusion in its work environment. An organisation that promotes DE&I creates an environment where all employees are respected, valued and supported, regardless of their differences. These differences include gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, culture and other characteristics in an organisation or team.


Establish a feedback culture

Promote a feedback culture in the team where constructive feedback is given and accepted. This can help to identify and address conflicts early on.


Introduce team-building activities

Introduce team-building activities that strengthen cooperation and trust within the team. This can help to reduce tensions and strengthen the sense of togetherness in the team. Sports activities, among others, are suitable for this purpose.


Promote solution-oriented thinking

Make sure that the team is focused on solutions and not on blaming or accusing. Encourage the team to work together to find solutions that are aligned with everyone’s needs and interests.


Name the „Elephant in the room“

No one mentions the hostility and blatant conflict between two team members. At the team meeting on Monday, the leader does not mention that two team members were fired the previous week. When unpleasant issues are not addressed, companies tolerate toxic employees. Recurring discussions or tensions in the background lead to wasted energy and interpersonal fatigue. And the lack of progress resulting from undiscussed issues saps morale and motivation.


Seek external support

In some cases, it can be helpful to bring in a mediator to help resolve conflicts. An experienced mediator can help from a neutral position to ensure that each team member is heard equally, that a different form of communication is found and that those involved work together to find a solution that works for all sides.



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