Know When to Leave a Conflict at Work Alone
You’ve probably heard that the only way to deal with work disagreements is to set things straight right away. While dealing with conflict directly is often the most effective route, there are times when it’s better to do nothing. The goal of engaging in a conflict discussion is to reach a resolution. So it’s probably not worth having that talk if you suspect that the other person isn't interested in addressing the issue or is unwilling to have a constructive conversation. You should also leave a conflict alone if you yourself don't have the energy or time to invest in preparing for and having a productive conversation. And it’s probably a good idea to avoid a conflict discussion if you have little or no power, such as when you’re dealing with someone above you. Just keep in mind that this approach won't work if you can’t put the disagreement behind you.
Adapted from the HBR Guide to Managing Conflict at Work, by Amy Gallo.
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