Conflict. Do you shy away from it or seek it out? Amy Gallo opened her session on Managing Conflict in the Workplace by posing this question to the 2016 Pacesetters and members of BNP Paribas’ LFT (Leaders for Tomorrow) program on February 15th. Amy explained most people gravitate toward one of two styles. Conflict avoiders value harmony in the workplace and therefore try to prevent conflict from disrupting relationships; while conflict seekers care about directness and honesty so are comfortable tackling conflict head on and sharing their position. As Amy described in more depth the characteristics of each style, the participants were able to identify their tendency; that was the jumping off point for a productive learning session.
The good news is that by recognizing your style, understanding the different types of conflicts, and applying proven strategies, conflict can be managed constructively. Over the course of the afternoon session, Amy shared her expertise, the latest management research, and practical tips; she also engaged participants in interactive exercises that built their skills. Participants left the session with increased confidence on how to address conflicts in their own lives.
Amy Gallo (www.amyegallo.com) is the author of the HBR Guide to Dealing with Conflict, a how-to guidebook about handling conflict professionally and productively. She is a contributing editor at Harvard Business Review, where she writes and develops ideas for the web, magazine, and press. She covers a range of topics with a focus on managing conflict, managing yourself, leading people, and building your career. Having worked with dozens of organizations and written about workplace dynamics for over a decade, Amy is particularly interested in situations in which relationships fall apart and how to repair them. Before working as a writer and editor, she was a consultant at Katzenbach Partners, a strategy and organization consulting firm based in New York (later acquired by Booz & Company, which is now Strategy&). She is a graduate of Yale University and has a masters from Brown University. You can buy her book here: https://www.amazon.com/HBR-Guide-Dealing-Conflict/dp/1633692159
Many thanks to BNP Paribas, an FWA President Circle firm, for hosting this event. And special thanks go to Rachael Akohonoe, Managing Director, Head of US Employment Law & Employee Relations/Head of Diversity & Inclusion for welcoming the participants and to Donna La Spina, Vice President at BNP Paribas and FWA liaison for her support in arranging the event.