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

About Conflict

Many people go to extremes to avoid any sign of disagreement or the appearance of conflict. It is tough for people to learn how to disagree without fighting. In conducting meetings, you hope that conflict will not occur, but if it does, don't be afraid to deal with it. A meeting which airs differences of opinions and exchanges of strongly held beliefs is a good meeting! You got to the heart of matters, and people spoke truthfully. Strong disagreement can generate emotions, but it can also engender deeper thoughts on the issues.

It is important, though, that the opinions and exchanges be controlled, and that's where you come in. Insist that participants stick to the agenda items and the content provided there and prevent personal remarks of any sort. If people bring hidden agendas or unresolved emotional issues to your meeting, contain the contribution of their "baggage" but encourage their thinking and responses to your meeting content.

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HANDLING DISRUPTIVE AND INAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIORS HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT

Directions: Read the assigned material on dealing with disruptive behavior in meetings. Write the requested number of ways to deal with meeting troublemakers on this sheet. Make your suggestions as specific as possible. For example, don't just say "ask a question"; write the question itself. Using your own wording for the ideas helps make this important information your own. Use ideas from your topic.

  1. Hostile persons [overly disagreeable] ( 5 suggestions)

  2. Know-It-Alls (3 suggestions)

  3. Loudmouths [overly talkative] ( 5 suggestions)

  4. Whisperers [side conversations] ( 3 suggestions)

  5. Silents [quiet, shy] ( 3 suggestions)

TYPE

SUGGESTED RESPONSE

Example:

 

Know-It-Alls

Ask for their support in advance. "I realize you know a lot about this (if they really do). Will you serve as a reference if we need specifics?"

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