Chip Shots – Creatively Resolving Conflict

by  Paula Kiger  |  Chip Shots
Chip Shots – Creatively Resolving Conflict

Here at Lead Change Group, we know that problems are most effectively solved when individuals come together to meld ideas, energies, and approaches.

To use a golf analogy, not every shot is a long drive. Many times, golfers have to take a chip shot to move the ball along for a short distance, with incisive accuracy.

If you are new to the Chip Shots green, welcome. In our Chip Shots feature, our Leading Voices are invited to provide brief insights into a leadership-related topic.

To learn more, spend some time browsing the entire Chip Shots Series.

Today’s Question

When you think back on incidents of “conflict” in your life, what is the one thing you were told that made a difference in the outcome?

David Dye responds: It’s been shared in so many different conflict resolution courses, but the first place I learned it was in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, when Atticus Finch tells Scout: “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view…until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”

When you’re in conflict, it’s vital to really look at the world from the other person’s perspective if you want to create lasting solutions.

Jon Mertz answers: What made the difference in the outcome is the issue was raised as one to begin with. Too often we let conflicts fester. Once raised, it was done with a listening mindset. What this really means is not being accusatory but communicating what the conflict is and what it means to me and our relationship. In the process, offering suggestions on how to change the situation and listening to suggestions as well. By listening and remaining calm in understanding, a better way forward is discovered.

Karin Hurt recommends: Try to step back from the situation and view it as an outside observer to see both sides of what is really happening.

Mary Schaefer shares: Once when I was bemoaning how an interaction went, a mentor of mine told me that good communicators don’t always get it right the first time. Humbly ask for a do-over.

Mike Henry reminds us of Steven Covey’s fifth habit, “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”

Thank you David, Jon, Karin, Mary, and Mike for taking a shot at this question!

What has made a difference for you at a time of conflict?

About The Author

Articles By paula-kiger
Paula worked for almost twenty years for Florida’s State Child Health Insurance Program. She is currently doing freelance work in the communications industry. Her Twitter bio describes her best: wife of one, mom of two, friend of many.  »  View Profile

What People Are Saying

Julian  |  31 Jul 2015  |  Reply

Great article…something that we should all be doing, walking in somebody elses shoes (for at least a short time)
This article is great at promoting compassion and tolerance. Thanks for posting

Paula Kiger (Admin)  |  02 Aug 2015  |  Reply

I agree, Julian! Thanks for stopping by.

Rena McDianiel  |  31 Jul 2015  |  Reply

I think that age has had the most influence in any conflict these days. When I was young I had a really bad temper. Things happened in the early part of life that I had to get over. That took age, wisdom, and maturity. Now, it takes a lot to ruffle my feathers.

Paula Kiger (Admin)  |  02 Aug 2015  |  Reply

Yes, age (and experience) definitely change how we handle conflict. Thanks so much for commenting!

Mary C. Schaefer  |  03 Aug 2015  |  Reply

Good job with this post, Paula. Just seeing it.

Margy KJ  |  23 Aug 2015  |  Reply

Hi Paula- are you able to receive this comment?

Paula Kiger (Admin)  |  23 Aug 2015  |  Reply

Thanks, Margy! Got it!

John Marcelo  |  23 Aug 2015  |  Reply

An excellent article…

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