Avoiding Conflict is a No-Win Decision (Part 3 of 5)

In our last two posts, we found Joe, the owner, and Fred, a manager, at odds over Joe’s need to implement processes and Fred’s unwillingness to support that decision. We discovered that while Joe made the right decision to install processes and systems to increase efficiency, he went about it in the wrong way.

The solution to effective change is communication!

How could Joe have communicated better with Fred, and what can you do to avoid these same problems?

  1. Joe could have sat down with Fred, outlined where he planned to take the company, and mentor and coach the team under him. As the owner, Joe needed to be prepared to ask for Fred’s feedback and be truly willing to hear Fred’s responses without insisting on Fred being someone he is not.
  2. If Fred was not showing up to planned meetings, Joe needed to talk directly with Fred and let him know that the meetings were mandatory and his presence was critical to the their success. Coordinating with Fred’s schedule would make sure the meetings happened.
  3. When word got out that Fred was criticizing the processes and procedures the company was trying to implement, Joe could have asked him about it immediately to discover what his concerns or issues were. Willingness to hear Fred’s concerns and to spend the time to help him understand the important role systems and policies play in helping the company grow sustainably could have overcome Fred’s objections.
  4. When Joe realized he had not been communicating clearly or not holding up his end of the relationship, he needed to be willing to take responsibility for his own part in the communication gap.

As the owner, Joe is responsible for creating an environment where his employees are part of a team that works together for everyone’s success. (See my January 2014 blog series on Creating a Culture of Accountability.)

Come back for the last blog in this series for the conclusion of our story.

As a business consultant and coach for more than 20 years, Vicki has helped hundreds of companies realize an appreciable, sustainable business growth and increased profits. She works with owners and managers to create alignment in teams and to build “cultures of accountability” – a key for building a sustainably successful company! As a business coach, Vicki’s straightforward style helps business owners and managers maintain clarity and focus on what they need to do to reach their goals.