Conflict is an inevitable part of life.

Whether it arises in our personal relationships, professional endeavors, or even within ourselves, how we handle it can make all the difference.

The ability to resolve conflicts effectively isn’t just a valuable skill – it’s a transformative one.

In this blog post, we’ll delve deep into the world of conflict resolution techniques that have consistently delivered real results.

From defusing heated arguments to fostering understanding and collaboration, we’re about to embark on a journey that will equip you with the tools to turn conflict into an opportunity for growth.

Are you tired of those recurring disputes that seem unsolvable?

Do you wish you could communicate more effectively when tensions rise?

Stick with us, because by the end of this article, you’ll be armed with the knowledge you need to navigate conflicts with confidence and emerge stronger on the other side.

Let’s explore the art and science of conflict resolution together.

Before attempting to resolve a conflict, there are three prerequisites we must address:

A) Directly and Immediately Address the Appropriate Party Instead of Dwelling on Hurts

Conflict is like a fire; it’s easier to extinguish when small but can become nearly impossible to handle if not dealt with quickly.

Hurt feelings, which lead to conflict, often stem from unfulfilled expectations.

To establish the right mindset, begin by examining your expectations.

Ask yourself:  What were your expectations, and why did the other person fail to meet them?

Always assume the other person’s best intentions during this process and give them the benefit of the doubt.

B) Discuss Concerns with the Other Party Instead of Gossiping

Our initial instinct is often to discuss conflicts with others rather than addressing the offending party directly.

This is gossip and criticism, which are detrimental to leadership and success.

Practicing integrity when the other party is not present is essential.

Remember that actions stem from thinking, and character assassination is just one step away from actual harm.

C) Meet Face to Face to Address Conflicts Instead of Relying on Electronic Communications

While sending a quick email or a short note may seem like a convenient way to address conflict, consider the perspective of the other party.

A brief written note lacks the emotional expression of a face-to-face interaction and may lead to misinterpretation.

Additionally, it doesn’t allow for immediate responses and can prolong friction between parties.

Special Note for Third-Party Leaders

In most cases, third-party leaders assisting two individuals in conflict may not have the assurance that Prerequisites A, B, and C have been followed.

These leaders must deeply understand the five steps we are about to cover and help the parties apply them.

The Five Steps to Dealing with Conflict Resolution are:

1. Affirm the Relationship

When dealing with conflict, it’s crucial to start by addressing the positive aspects.

Reaffirm common ground and use sincere words of praise.

Communicate respect.

For example, express that you value the friendship more than avoiding the discomfort of confronting hurt feelings.

Affirming the relationship is essential, and it should be repeated throughout the process.

2. Seek to Understand

Begin by focusing on understanding the other party’s perspective.

Explore their unmet expectations and what led to the misunderstanding.

Allow them to explain in their own words, and listen actively.

Mirroring their words back to them signals your attentive listening.

During this stage, avoid taking their words personally and give them the benefit of the doubt.

3. Seek to Be Understood

Once you understand the other person’s viewpoint, it becomes easier to share your own feelings and thoughts.

However, do so without attacking or blaming.

Express yourself respectfully and make sure your good intentions are felt.

Avoid justifying, blaming, or assigning motives to the other person.

4. Own Responsibility and Sincerely Apologize

Take responsibility for your part in the conflict within the bounds of truth.

Stincerely apologize when appropriate.

This not only benefits the other person but also helps you feel better.

Leaders accept responsibility and apologies graciously, moving forward without dwelling on past issues.

5. Seek Agreement

After addressing issues and hurt feelings, both parties will feel a stronger bond and commitment.

Agree to discuss potential conflicts immediately to avoid future issues.

Use this opportunity to talk about how increased unity can lead to greater achievements.

Always focus on the future and turn conflicts into opportunities for cooperation and victory.


To recap, the three prerequisites for conflict resolution are:

a) Directly and Immediately Address the Appropriate Party Instead of Dwelling on the Hurt

b) Discuss Concerns with the Other Party Instead of Gossiping

c) Meet Face to Face to Address Conflicts Instead of Relying on Electronic Communications

The five steps for resolving conflicts are:

1) Affirm the relationship

2) Seek to understand

3) Seek to be understood

4) Own responsibility by apologizing

5) Seek agreemen

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