Table of Contents, Career Coach Resources Page Previous Section, Career Coach Next Section, Career Coach

Westside Toastmasters is located in Los Angeles and Santa Monica, California


A fault is a crack, gradually widening and separating people.

Preventing a conflict from happening is much better than having to deal with one that has occurred. Here's how to avoid conflict and maintain harmonious relationships with co-workers:

  1. Avoid being continuously judgemental of others. Judge them by their actions and results, rather than by who they are.

  2. Stop trying to change people. Try to influence their actions and behaviour, because you will not be able to change their personalities.

  3. Be helpful to others whenever possible. When they are overloaded, offer to assist. You'll earn the gratitude of those around you.

  4. When people are angry at you or at others, give them a chance to blow off steam without interruption. You don't have to agree with their point of view, but you can agree with their right to be angry.

  5. Listen to others. Give people a chance to influence you without cutting them off or developing a rebuttal before they have even finished expressing their idea.

  6. Maintain a cheerful disposition. It is hard for people to pick an argument with someone who has a positive demeanour.

  7. Keep the lines of communication open. Always be open to the opinions and ideas of others.

  8. Make humour a part of the workplace. Keep things light. It will never be taken as a sign that you don't care.

  9. Focus on facts and information, rather than on rumours and feelings.

  10. Involve people in changes that you make. Listen to and understand their interests, objectives, and concerns.

  11. Deal with issues that are hard to discuss, otherwise the problem will intensify. Understand why these "undiscussables" exist, so they can be brought to the surface and dealt with.

  12. Immediately resolve issues that prevent completion of obligations by the targeted date.

  13. Don't shy away from conflict about ideas. Point out that you respect the opinions of others, even though you may not agree with them.

  14. Develop an understanding with your colleagues as to how conflict will be dealt with when it arises.

  15. Keep your ear to the ground. Tap into the grapevine so that you can identify issues before they get blown out of proportion. Deal with these issues before they become disruptive.

  16. Participate in setting ground rules for your team. Reiterate, for example, that members don't have to like each other, but they should respect each other.

Table of Contents, Career Coach Resources Page Previous Section, Career Coach Next Section, Career Coach