This blog reflects on life at work at comments on the latest news that shapes my 9-5 working day in a Corporate Communications consultancy.

About Me

I am a born and bred South African who has always loved to read and write. As a child my mother used to read to me and my siblings, from classics like the “Lord of the Rings” but later also from her own stories. She would write children’s stories and then use us as her test audience, but I loved to hear what she had written long after my siblings had tired of it. So I grew up in an environment of reading and writing, which inspired my love of these things. I hope to write a great book some day, and have learnt first hand the determination and will that it takes. My love of English inspired me to continue my study of it at university. I majored in Law and English in a BA degree at UCT where I found that I took to English much more than law. I enjoyed learning about South Africa’s history and the development of our liberal Constitution, which increasingly made me committed to the hope this country has for the future. Ideally, I’d like to find myself in a job where I am able to write; that allows a good mix of time spent with people and being able to work on my own.

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

forgetting my lessons in conflict management

I forgot my lessons in conflict management and was reminded:

1. If you have a problem, voice it - or it will just get bigger.... and bigger.

2. If a team member approaches you about a mistake you've made, apologise and rectify as soon as you can.... rather than being rude to the person who raised the issue with you.

3. Put your personal differences aside for the sake of a healthy working relationship and a well functioning team.

A few years ago, I shared a flat with a friend from varsity who proved very difficult to live with. Rather than approach her about things I was unhappy with, I kept quiet, and the issues got bigger and bigger and we ended up having a huge fight.

I realised then that it was much better to talk about things as they arose. My natural inclination is to avoid conflict, though. But I've thought back to WoW and the conflict - productivity graph...

A lesson I'll keep having to be reminded of until I put it into practice!


Ijeoma Uche-Okeke said...

Susan A.,
I hear you. The lessons learnt at WOW keep coming in handy as we go along and deal with day to day interactions. I find that I always have to remind myself not to be too verbal in situations where I have conflicting opinions. Particularly in my current programme. I have to stop and think before I say something. It is important to frame things in a very neutral way I am finding when dealing with people from different cultures. I found that a wise approach in SA as well. What I think is 'business as usual' is not the same for someone from a different race and background.

Adam N. Mukendi said...

Hi Sue A,
You and Ije have said it all about conflicts management. But reading between lines, I feel that you have been under some difficulties. However, I wish that now you have remembered about some successful tips, you will always manage adversity in future.
You have just remind me about what I do tell my friends; "sincerity and honesty are guardians of love".
All the best

Thomas Blaser said...

I hear you. On your first point, remember you can also choose to avoid conflict as a strategy, not as a default option. At times its better to do so. Also, apologies may be necessary but you also need to defend your record vigorously. There are always people whow choose to put you down just for the sake of it and you need to put a big NO, NO sign in front of their noses. I trust you feel better after your drowned out birthday dinner and we will make up for it - I prefer however Rodizios; there is also one in Bedfordview, I believe.