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BE CAREFUL: THE CONFLICTS OF OTHERS |
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BE CAREFUL: THE CONFLICTS OF OTHERS

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For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move.

— BE CAREFUL: THE CONFLICTS OF OTHERS

Adeeb and Susan started work at Gulf Inc. together right after their PhD graduation. Two finest professionals who raised the expectations and pride of Steve the office manager. Steve was so happy with the both academic achievements, he made them have one of the premium offices in the plaza. Two
months after, Adeeb and Susan practically became obvious enemies, too hard to break aside by team members. It was always disastrous when they get switched to unpleasant arguments related to either poor quality work from one to the other or inability to meet deadlines. They become so bitter that work environment turned toxic for others.

Remember, people will tell what you said to them when angry. It’s a matter of time.

At work, there will always be conflicts, arguments and anger. It is not strange, its core to working with people. We’ve all been there, when two of our colleagues draw us into choosing sides. To be honest with you, conflict at work most times have little to do with education or being professional but attitude. There will always be people who unintentionally control how we feel at work and bug into our plans. In
most cases, colleagues want to draw us into their chaos. I know that when colleagues get at cross roads, they want to get people on their side. Reporting each other to anyone who cares to listen. Some even pitch tents against their supervisors reporting every wrong actions of their boss to colleagues. Well, our
colleagues want our endorsement, of course! Our support will add strength to their case against the other party. Some will not mind the impending disappointment of others including our supervisors. “I can’t find the cause of you both bitterness and hatred for each other after 3 months of careful observations” so said Steve over a coffee to Adeeb at the city centre Starbucks shop. Ricardo responded with the biggest shock ‘I haven’t said this before, Susan called me a “Parki” (a word considered to be racial for Arab) at our induction, “such a racist”. But no one knows that. It’s affecting the team, Steve responded.

Here is the point
Most times when we see people upset with each other at work, we think we know but we don’t really know the root cause. So, we need to be careful. Just as the law of gravity, whatever goes up is expected to come down and you don’t want it to come down on you. Never pitch tent with people when they get into arguments. You rather not talk than make enemies in place of allies. When colleagues come calling for supports that could lead to argument like telling shit about the manager, technical request of support against others at work, express their anger against management in unprofessional manner, you will need to be very careful particularly when you don’t have the ability to float through life with the grace of a
proud, eloquent swan. Just as Adeeb, some colleagues’ motivation for anger could be hidden from you and in such situation, you might judge or pitch wrongly.

What you say when two parties are upset with each other could turn you to the third person in the conflict.

The way out?

Allow each parties to vent. Sometimes, it reveals characters you will never see except they do vent out. Occasionally, colleagues just need to get bug out of their minds and you happened to be standing right there. While venting anger, ‘what do you think’ they may ask without you knowing you have been drawn in.

In such cases, I always like to ask back ‘please sit down, what do you think is the solution’. Fortunately for me, most times, they end up knowing they might be the wrong one when they stand in the shoes of the judge. Allow them to vent but don’t take sides. Don’t bring your own unpleasant experience to cause more harm.

Seek Diplomatic Pro.
You must have someone who seems to rise above the fray. They are the eloquent and elegant swan in troubled waters. They are always un-baited; you can’t lure them on a wrong side because they see bigger picture in their responses. Why not seek their permission to refer them than drag yourself in.? Look for someone that can speak to the person you are angry with. Someone they listen to.

Choose to be on all sides when you don’t want to be dragged in, particularly, when you don’t know what to do. Show empathy and send them to someone that can help.

To conclude, people will always find a compromise ground when all is said and done. At this point, each party want to recall what you said to them and they might not mind sharing your comments with their old enemy who is now an ally. So, be careful, don’t pitch tent at work or take side.

Remember, people will tell what you said to them when angry. It’s a matter of time.

5 Comments
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