Toolkit for dealing with challenging situations in the workplace.
Note: with practice tools 1 to 4 can be used whilst the situation is developing, tool 5 is for after the event.
Understanding that it is the situation that is causing the conflict and it is not directed at you personally.
Recognising that you may not be able to meet all of your customers’ expectations especially when you don’t know what they are.
Remove yourself from a potentially compromising situation and ask a colleague to step in.
Putting on your uniform at work and removing before leaving the premises helps to create a “work mindset”
Focus on your personal priorities
Why are you doing this job? Is it to pay the bills? To pay for luxuries or simply to survive?
Do you enjoy your work?
Keep a photograph in view of someone or something important
Reminders of your priorities – a page from a holiday brochure, picture of a new car etc.
Learn from past experiences whether positive or negative
What would you do differently next time?
How could you change the outcome for the better?
Recognise it’s not a battle
Mirror good practice
Recognise how you felt
Know your strengths and weaknesses
Your own values and beliefs may influence your behaviour
Be self aware body language, tone of voice, terminology, active listening skills.
How do others see you? Is that because they are friends or colleagues
Phrasing of questions, politeness and courtesy.
How do you like to be treated when you are a customer?
Recognise a safe zone which is an environment where you can let off steam in a confidential situation
Share with others and learn from each other’s experiences
Reflection on how you felt and what you would change next time
Trying to leave work problems at work
Managing stress, what tactics work for you?
……. and finally
It is said “you can’t please all of the people all of the time”, this is very true so unfortunately some workplace conflict is almost inevitable.
However if on reflection you appear to be experiencing more than your fair share of workplace conflicts perhaps not all the fault lies with the other party. You may need to consider having an honest look at tool 4 again!!