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How to Handle Workplace Conflicts Effectively? 1

How to Handle Workplace Conflicts Effectively?

One of the things that is bound to occur in a workspace that two or more people occupy is a workplace conflict. So, the question isn’t whether you’ve had a dispute at your workplace, it is when and how you’ve handled it.

How to Handle Workplace Conflicts Effectively? 2

Software engineers and developers typically work in teams to complete projects on very tight schedules. This creates a rather stressful environment. Working in a team with similar skills but different attitudes for 8-10 hours a day will inevitably create conflict. 

If not handled with care, workplace conflicts can lead to long-term stress and affect your ability to perform at your best. In this article, we will discuss:

  • How to Prevent Workplace Conflicts
  • Avoiding Conflicts
  • How to Manage Workplace Conflicts

How to Prevent Workplace Conflicts

There are some measures you can take to prevent conflicts and disputes in your team. These measures include:

  • Effective Project Planning – Inattentive project planning will lead to disagreements within the software team. Assess potential risks and prioritise tasks.
  • Set Clear Goals and Roles – Set goals and targets when you plan out the project and delegate roles according to each colleague’s strength. This is especially for managers and team leaders. 
  • Communicate – Effective communication is key to any team sport; your software team is no different.

When to Completely Avoid Conflicts

When a workplace conflict arises, people most often think that they have only 2 options: confront it or avoid it. There are instances when avoiding a fight is absolutely necessary. These instances are:

  • When a disagreement begins to turn into personal attacks.
  • The argument becomes so heated that the possibility of a physical attack becomes likely.
  • When the issue is not really important and won’t negatively impact the project.

It may be incredibly challenging to do this but walking away from a situation like any of these can be critical. Don’t worry about looking like a coward; odds are that you will be seen as the bigger person instead. In any case, public image shouldn’t be your main concern in times like these. Remember that you need to work with the person you’re having a conflict with. Do what it takes with the long-term picture in mind. 

We do understand, however, that this may not always be possible. That brings us to our next section.

How to Handle Workplace Conflicts

Suppose you can’t prevent a dispute from arising and you can’t even avoid it when it happens—you can definitely still try your best to handle it effectively. Here’s how:

  • Communication – Mentioned earlier, this is crucial when handling conflicts or disputes. Fights occur because of misunderstandings or a lack of communication between colleagues. Listen to facts, listen to the other person’s opinions and views, and just talk it out. Do not get aggressive or get personal, always keep it professional. 
  • Attack the problem, not the person – Always identify the root of the dispute and place more importance on attacking that instead of the person. This will help your team in the long run. 
  • Assess the situation and come to a compromise – Summarize the agreements and disagreements, assess the situation with the other person, pick out the best bits from the arguments and see which will solve your problem and come to an understanding. 
  • Admit when you’re wrong– This is very important when it comes to solving issues and maintaining a positive professional relationship with your colleagues. 
  • Get a mediator to step in – When the issue goes out of hand and there seems to be no answer in sight, get help and advice from your managers or your team leaders or anyone who is in a position to help resolve the issue at hand. 


In this article, we have avoided being too specific because of how subjective workplace conflicts can be. However, following these basic guidelines should help resolve no matter what situation you’re in. 

Remember that maintaining a healthy work-life balance is essential to keeping things pleasant at work. Check out our tips to manage workplace stress too, following these tips can make a world of a difference when it comes to avoiding workplace conflicts altogether!

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Vikram Ahuja

Vikram Ahuja

A serial entrepreneur and co-founder of Talent500. Enthusiastically strives to expand businesses across multiple domains by bringing creativity to the table. Zealous about pursuing ventures at the intersection of art, technology, and business. An award-winning short film-maker, and well-traveled theatre-performer. Took part in Google's global Daydream Impact program, which promoted the use of Virtual Reality for impact-based stories.

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