Conflict Resolution Strategies for the Classroom and Workplace

Career Advice

Conflict Resolution Strategies for the Classroom and Workplace

Unlock some of the best conflict resolution strategies for the workplace, classroom and beyond.

Conflict resolution is an important skill to practise for the workplace, classroom and other settings. In life and the professional world, there are often disagreements, rivalry and conflicts that require some strategic resolution to proceed with collaborative work.

In this blog, we will explore some of the top conflict resolution strategies in the workplace and other environments that would benefit from strong conflict management techniques, including conflict resolution strategies in the classroom.

1. Accommodate.

The first conflict resolution strategy to consider is the accommodating strategy. Most helpful for situations where a solution is needed quickly, the accommodating strategy involves one party conceding to the other’s wishes in order to resolve the conflict.

This kind of strategy works best when the problem could be solved in multiple ways according to different perspectives and when you don’t feel too strongly about your opinion on how to solve it. In this case, accommodating to the other party’s wishes will bring a quick solution to a problem that may have otherwise impeded important progress on a project.

2. Compromise.

The compromising strategy is valuable for situations in which both parties have strong opinions about an issue and want to reach a mutually beneficial agreement. In this case, each party has to give up some of their demands in order to compromise to the other party’s wishes and reach a middle ground. A compromising solution will keep both parties satisfied while resolving the conflict before it escalates further. However, it usually requires some discussion and negotiation to reach a working compromise.

3. Avoid.

The avoiding strategy, as suggested, involves ignoring the conflict in order to resolve it. This kind of situation arises when the problem isn’t a big problem or doesn’t seem to have a solution. Here, avoiding the existence of the problem can prove useful in moving forward with work that needs to be done instead of escalating a small problem into something larger. Avoidance may also be a good strategy to deploy in moments when tensions are high and you’re feeling stressed or frustrated with another person — taking time to breathe and separate yourself from the situation before confronting the other party will help prevent tensions from rising further.

4. Collaborate.

Another key conflict resolution strategy is collaborating. Similar to the compromising strategy, the collaborating strategy involves both parties working together to create a mutually beneficial solution. This strategy encourages colleagues or classmates to find creative solutions that consider and incorporate different perspectives and satisfy everyone’s wishes. This is an ideal, win-win strategy to solve conflicts, but it may also take more time to arrive at the right solution in a collaborative way.

Conflict resolution skills

If you’re unsure how to handle conflict resolution, there are critical soft skills that come in handy when dealing with conflict, including:

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Verbal communication and listening skills
  • Ability to think clearly in stressful situations
  • Collaboration
  • Critical thinking
  • Empathy

When applying one of the main conflict resolution strategies in this blog, remember to tap into your strong soft skills, engaging in active listening, clearly communicating your perspective, staying calm when tensions rise, collaborating with others effectively, analyzing the problem carefully and demonstrating empathetic understanding of others’ perspectives.

Mastering conflict resolution strategies can make a huge difference when you face real conflicts in the classroom, workplace and other settings. Know when and how to deploy these strategies, and carefully consider which approach works best, given factors like time constraints, the relationships between the people involved and how disruptive the conflict is.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Conflict resolution is the process of solving a conflict or disagreement. Conflict resolution skills are especially valuable for the workplace and classroom.

Conflict resolution is important to understand and apply in real-world situations like in the workplace and classroom. Using key strategies to resolve conflict in the workplace and other environments helps to smooth over disruptions and delays to projects, ensuring work can proceed effectively.

The exact steps to resolve conflict depend on each situation and the appropriate strategy being deployed, but conflict resolution often involves open and clear communication, compromising and collaborating.

02 July, 2024

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We acknowledge that the territories on which CCTB and its campus are situated are the traditional, ancestral and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. We thank them for having cared for this land since time immemorial, honour their graciousness to the students who seek knowledge here, and iterate our dedication to valuing the ongoing contributions of Indigenous peoples and communities.