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Episode 45: Reshape the Conflict Triangle

podcast relationships Nov 01, 2022

How do we avoid situations where the team talks about each other when there is some underlying conflict or frustration instead of talking to each other?

One of the most challenging aspects of leading your dream team is the human dynamics that emerge in communication, collaboration, or conflict. We dream of a team that is cohesive and works better together than they could ever do on their own. 

In reality, communication seems like we are speaking a different language, collaboration is clunky at best and conflict — oh conflict – that we’d love to avoid altogether.

Hearing other people’s perspectives and their journeys through conflict can help inform your own journey, but you’ll have to find your own path through.

Story 1: Simmering Conflict

A story of how little things fester over time. There is a feeling that something is off, but you can’t really put your finger on it. It’s hard to notice the point in time when you need to deal with it. Listen to how this leader crafted her conversation to invite mutual dialogue and how even though it didn’t go perfect they both learned how to deal with simmering conflict so it doesn’t boil over on others. 

Story 2: Surprising Conflict

A leader was talking with her team member in a meeting and they were working out some details about a recent event that needed some tweaking when unexpectedly her team member started crying. Out came her frustration at the way the leader was handling the situation. She felt accused and unsupported. Listen in on how this leader navigated the unexpected with asking questions, taking a pause and reengaging conflict quickly so the conversation doesn’t start leaking out when conflict lingers.

Story #3: Bouncing Back from Team Fallout

Danielle shares her story of the journey of hurt and grief when the under the surface stuff came up like a volcano in Episode 41: Bouncing Back from Team Fallout. It’s so hard as a leader, in that moment, to let go of that dream team you hoped would be yours. Danielle found her anchor in her faith and her dependence on God. She also leaned into her people! 

How do we avoid it? 

The way to avoid the “talking around” that often emerges is by addressing how we talk about “it” before “it” is even there. As a leader you can teach people how to have difficult conversations; you can model how it’s done when you show you’re willing to engage the small conversations along the way to lay groundwork for healthy conflict. 

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