Conflict Resolution

Mastering Business Requirements Elicitation: Part 2 Mastering Requirements Elicitation Part 2
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One of the things I want us to take a look at now is conflict resolution because this will come up for you. And interviews, workshops anywhere where you have more than one person that you're getting requirements from. There's the possibility that there'll be the conflict of requirements and also the conflict of people. So when people conflicts come up, we need to make sure that we address them right away that we don't let them linger. So we're going to look at some ways to resolve conflict. In many cases, conflict in the workplace just seems to be a fact of life, right?

We've all seen situations where different people with different goals and needs have come into conflict. And we've all seen the often intense personal animosity that can result from conflicts. So we want to make sure that we're not letting that fester. Right, and that we're resolving conflicts and As soon as possible, and that some of the good if you will, that comes out of resolving conflict as there is an increased understanding. So the discussion needed to resolve the conflict can expand people's awareness of the situation and give them an insight into how they can achieve their own goals without undermining those of other people. It can also create increased group cohesion.

So when conflict is resolved effectively, then team members can develop stronger mutual respect and a renewed faith in their ability to work together. And it can give improved self knowledge. So it pushes individuals to really examine their own goals and helps them understand the things that are most important to them. And also with sharpening their focus and enhancing their effectiveness. However, if it's not handled effectively, then the results can be really damaging, right because we can have the possibility of personal dislike right where people Just don't like each other teamwork would then break down because obviously people don't want to work together that they don't like. And talent gets wasted because people become disengaged from their work.

If they are not enjoying the team that they're working with, and they're not going to enjoy the work and if they're not enjoying the work, then they're going to disengage from it. We want to make sure again, that we're addressing conflict as quickly as we can. I want to talk about a few styles for dealing with conflict. The first one is competitive. So people who tend towards a competitive style, take a firm stand and know what they want. They usually operate from a position of power drawn from things like position, rank, expertise, or persuasive ability.

So think about personalities and how people are and you can figure out if they are competitive and use this style. you yourself can use this style you can use any of the styles even if it's not your natural go to style While there are times when it is useful to use a specific style, right, so that's what I want to get across here. So the competitive style is useful when there is a quick decision that needs to be made, right? We don't have a lot of time to discuss it and a quick decision has to be made, or when we know that the decision is going to be unpopular, or when defending against someone who's trying to exploit a situation selfishly, you know that they're trying to take everybody down a certain route for their own game. However, it can leave people feeling kind of bruised, right, like they've been through a war unsatisfied and resentful also.

So you don't want to use it unless it truly is an urgent situation. The next style we have is collaborative. People tending towards a collaborative style try to meet the needs of all the people involved. They're a pleaser, right? They want to meet the needs of everybody. These people can be highly assertive, but unlike the competitor Order, they cooperate effectively and acknowledge that everyone is important.

This style is really useful when you need to bring together a lot of different viewpoints to get to the best solution. And when there have been previous conflicts in the group or when the situation is too important for simple trade off, right, like we're not going to be able to do something else, we're going to need to do it this way. And we're going to need to get everybody basically jumping on the bandwagon for this solution the way with that we want to do this compromising people who prefer a compromising style, try to find a solution that will at least partially satisfy everyone. Everyone is expected to give up something and the compromiser also expects to relinquish something compromises useful when the cost of conflict is higher than the cost of losing ground. So it's what's more important here. When equal strength opponents are at a standstill, and when there's a deadline looming, we wanted to use the collaborative approach when we know that we've got to move everybody towards a specific solution, it's okay to choose a different solution right when we don't have to be married to a particular one.

Accommodating this style indicates a willingness to meet the needs of others at the expense of the person's own needs. So in the compromising Remember, I said that everybody's giving something up, but in the accommodating style, it's more like, Hey, I'm giving something up, but you're getting what you want. Look at it that way. The accommodator often knows when to give in to others, but can be persuaded to surrender a position even when it is not warranted. This person is not assertive, but is highly cooperative. accommodation is appropriate when the issue matters more to the other party.

When pizza is more valuable than winning or when you want to be in a position to collect on a favor you gave. You may want to purposely use the accommodating style when you No, okay, I'm going to give into this person on this point. I'll go with what they're wanting to do here. And then later, I'll be able to remind them. Hey, Sally, remember when I did XYZ for you, now it's your turn to return the favor. That's when accommodating can be useful.

However, people may not return favors. So you need to make sure that you're okay with that outcome. Even if they're not going to do that. Usually, you're not going to get the best outcome with that approach. But if it's the only approach that can be used, it's obviously better than not avoiding this is kind of the non right people tending towards this style seek to evade the conflict entirely. We all probably know people like that.

You might even be like that, right? Where you're very uncomfortable with conflict. So you just avoid the situation and pretend it's not happening. That style. You can tell when somebody uses that style when they delegate decisions to other people. When they delegate accepting default decisions, and they don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, once you understand the different styles, you're able to use them to think about which is the most appropriate approach to use, right.

So even though you're going to have your own default style, you want to think about which style is right for a particular situation. And then use that approach. When you're using what we call the interface relational approach to resolve conflict, that approach respect the individual differences. while helping people avoid becoming too entrenched in a particular fixed position, right, we want them to be open to other options. So when you're using that approach to resolve conflict, there's some rules that you need to follow to make sure that it works well for you. Make sure that good relationships are the first priority.

So as far as it's possible, make sure that you treat the other calmly and that you try to build mutual Respect, do your best to be courteous to one another and remain constructive under pressure, don't start name calling. Keep it people and problems separate. So even if you don't like the person that's separate from the problem, the other person isn't usually just being difficult. their concerns are real and valid to them. And we need to be able to recognize that pay attention to the interests that are being presented, right. So use your listening skills and listen carefully.

Listen, first talk second. In order to be able to solve a problem effectively, you've got to understand where that other person's coming from. And before you can do that, you have to actually listen to what they have to say, set out the facts, right? So take the emotion out of it, and just set out the facts and agree and establish the objective and observable elements that are going to have an impact on the decision. explore options together, so be open to the idea that a third position may exist, right? You may think it has to be this way, Sallie Mae I think it has to be this way.

But you guys may be able to come up with an idea together. That's completely different from what either one of you originally envisioned as the solution. So make sure that you're open to that. By following those rules, you can keep discussions moving more down positive path and more constructive. You should follow a conflict resolution process anytime that you are in a position of needing to resolve conflict. And the reason for that is because if you just kind of wing it, so to speak, and you're not following your process, then you're probably not going to be effective at dealing with the conflict.

If you're involved in the conflict, then you want to emphasize the fact that you're presenting your perception of the problem. So you want to use the active listening skills to ensure that you hear and understand the other person's position and perceptions. So you can use the paraphrasing technique you can use the mirroring technique, right which is you restate specifically what they said, you can summarize what you're hearing all that will help make sure that they're confirming that you're understanding them correctly. When you're in the midst of that conflict resolution, you want to make sure that you are not using terminology that is going to make the other person defensive. So besides using your active listening skills and making sure that you're interpreting correctly, what they're saying, You also want to make sure that you use I statements instead of use statements because when you say you this or use that, then you can put somebody on the defensive, so use I statements rather than use statements and remember to remain flexible, right and be considerate of their ideas and positions as well.

I'm going to let you read the rest of the conflict resolution document on your own. It's a downloadable document in the learning management system and you'll be able to review this information I don't want to you know, just sit read this information to you, but it is the type of information that really does require that you read it and absorb it.

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