Managing Conflict, in Life & Work: using ancient and modern approaches

Written by Dr. Jason Armstrong and Dana Buchman

Copyright 2005 by Dr. Jason Armstrong and Dana Buchman

“Conflict” is a word that can have varying degrees of severity, meaning, and implication for each individual or circumstance. For example,repparttar conflict that is experienced in our current, daily lives seems insignificant in comparison torepparttar 135907 Samurai, or those in war, who faced death on a regular basis. However, it is still important to extrapolaterepparttar 135908 significant lessons that have been derived from such severe scenarios, as these notions are still applicable inrepparttar 135909 conflict that we experience inrepparttar 135910 workplace and life today.

Conflict is unavoidable, as each individual has unique and differing thoughts, ideas, and opinions. Therefore, it is important to learn ways to minimize and manage this difficulty, in order to ensure efficient and harmonious interactions. This article providesrepparttar 135911 genesis of a personal path, introducing tools and ways to minimize and manage conflict, while pointing torepparttar 135912 origin of these concepts. After an overview of these modern and ancient approaches, a discussion will follow on applying successful tools and techniques for managing conflict. These ideas can be used to help clearrepparttar 135913 mind for better decision-making, and consequently, ensure a personal pathway to success.

New approaches to ancient concepts Profound strategies and lessons to minimize and manage conflict have been around for thousands of years in forms such asrepparttar 135914 classic Chinese textsrepparttar 135915 “Book of Change – Tao de Ching” andrepparttar 135916 “Art of War”. Today, modern legends including Stephen Covey (“7 Habits for Highly Effective People”) and Dale Carnegie present similar corporate and personal tools. As many knowrepparttar 135917 “7 Habits” is not a group of new concepts, but age-old approaches to success and conflict management, represented in a way that can be clearly applied to modern day personal and corporate development.

Discoveringrepparttar 135918 origin & foundation of concepts Although many ofrepparttar 135919 true ancient concepts have been exaggerated or misused through incorrect interpretations, they can be applied in non-extreme forms relevant to repparttar 135920 modern day from such arts as: Zen (which is not a religion, but a path for self discovery and growth),repparttar 135921 “Art of War” by Sun Tzu (the classic text on strategy which is often regarded asrepparttar 135922 most definitive text onrepparttar 135923 topic), andrepparttar 135924 Tao de Ching (the “book of change”). These all provide profound lessons for leadership, change, success, peace of mind and conflict management.

A workplace example – an tense group meeting debating a topic If one has to enter a meeting with a number of staff peers on a topic that is likely to require an intense debate, a strategy can be put into place to help provide a successful outcome (this should be combined withrepparttar 135925 other approaches outlined below). For example, one can approachrepparttar 135926 members ofrepparttar 135927 meeting individually prior torepparttar 135928 meeting to convey your preferred position. Oncerepparttar 135929 meeting has started you will hopefully already have likely confrontational people already “on-side” to achieve your desired outcome in a non-confrontational way.

The Key to Managing Conflict: bringing it all together, and applying it today Allrepparttar 135930 above methods (old and new) are about changing core behavior and approaches, in order to avoid conflict and simultaneously achieve personal success.

As Sun Tzu states:

“If you know yourself and know others – you will be successful. If you know others and not yourself, you will win one and lose one. If you do not know others and do not know yourself, you are destined for failure in every battle.”

These are core values, and far more important than putting band-aids on problems, or approaching things with simply a short-term change. In regard torepparttar 135931 ancient philosophies, they of course must be interpreted, and applied, using case studies and real world examples in a context that matchesrepparttar 135932 modern corporate world. Applied Zen ( is a company that provides workshops, and downloadable videos online, regarding these exact topics with a unique approach. This is achieved through implementation of physical interaction drills to reinforcerepparttar 135933 concepts covered in workshop presentations. Studies have shown that learning conflict management based on physical as well as mental practice greatly increases repparttar 135934 participants’ retention, and consequently, aids in implementation (more than 2 to 3 fold improvement).

A Leadership Screw Driver: The 90 Day Improvement Plan

Written by Brent Filson

PERMISSION TO REPUBLISH: This article may be republished in newsletters and on web sites provided attribution is provided torepparttar author, and it appears withrepparttar 135849 included copyright, resource box and live web site link. Email notice of intent to publish is appreciated but not required: mail to:

Word count: 648

Summary: All leaders must eventually deal with poor performers. The author describes a method to help poor performers become good performers. It is based on developing and executing a 90-Day Improvement Plan.

A Leadership Screw Driver: The 90 Day Improvement Plan by Brent Filson

I was talking with first-line supervisors in a utility company about how to deal with poor performing employees.

"You've gotta putrepparttar 135850 screws to him!" suggested one supervisor to his colleague who was having trouble managing one particular poor performer.

"I've put so many screws to him he's dead weight!"repparttar 135851 supervisor replied.

We all knew what "puttingrepparttar 135852 screws to him" meant -- using rewards and punishments to force change in behavior.

The trouble is, rewards and punishments arerepparttar 135853 least effective ways of dealing with poor performers. That's because poor performers are usually smart, motivated, and tenacious -- when it comes to poor performing.

To changerepparttar 135854 behavior of poor performers, avoidrepparttar 135855 outside-in approach of rewards and punishments and cultivate an inside-out approach.

Aesop understood that. There isrepparttar 135856 Aesop's fable ofrepparttar 135857 wind and sun competing to see who can remove a coat from a man. The wind tries to blowrepparttar 135858 coat off, butrepparttar 135859 man clutches it tightly to his body. Thenrepparttar 135860 sun grows hotter, andrepparttar 135861 man, perspiring heavily and getting hotter and hotter, gladly ripsrepparttar 135862 coat off.

The leadership lesson is clear: You can bluster and blow to get somebody to accomplish a task, but that's not as effective as setting up a situation in whichrepparttar 135863 person gladly does it.

Here is a way to deal with poor performers using Aesop's lesson:repparttar 135864 90-Day Improvement Plan. A business leader tells me that he uses such plans as tools for change. Each plan is comprised of two pages:repparttar 135865 first page pointing out thatrepparttar 135866 individual must improve andrepparttar 135867 second page detailingrepparttar 135868 precise ways that improvement must take place.

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