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Resolving Office Conflict with Fellow Co-workers

2016-02-08 09:00:00 +0000 by Kellie-Anne Molloy


Starting a new language job abroad can be exciting, you get introduced into a new family, new culture and more – but of course not everything is a walk in the park. At some point in our lives we are going to come across those who we just don’t see eye to eye with.
But that’s ok, things happen, there is always a way to fix certain issues. Of course in a work situation you may not be able to handle conflict in the same way. Take me for example: I may call out a not-so-nice person in my day-to-day life, asking them if there is something that I may have done to have them treat me this way. 

But in the workplace, conflict resolution can be a little trickier. In order to stay on track of progressing our careers and climbing the corporate ladder we do have to play nice with the not-so-nice co-worker.

With all of us here in the office having some collective fun experiences in previous language jobs, we have all also had our fair share of office conflict. Now, since our main goal is to help you find a language job abroad that you will love – we can’t always know about those in the office that you will work with. Our answer? To cover all of the basics and have you ready for anything!  

  • 1. Walk a mile in my shoes:

We all have different points of view, and that’s ok – all we need to do is find a common ground on which to build. Talk to each other and try to see where the other party is coming from. This way you are knocking possible future office conflict on the head and are now able to build a good relationship with your fellow co-worker.

  • 2. Kill them with Kindness:

If you’ve noticed a fellow co-worker behaving differently around you and you can’t think of a reason why. Why not kill them with kindness? In doing so they simply have no reason to be untoward with you as you have given them no reason, hopefully any office conflict is resolved and for those who are not a fan of confrontation this is a great step.

  • 3. Keep your Cool:

Many people can act aggressive or mean in the office because of a lot of reasons, perhaps they are stressed about meeting a deadline or maybe they are in the middle of a competition for a promotion, but also remember when certain people are in a work environment they may seem cold or confrontational but this could just be their work personae. Whatever the issue is, we would recommend starting with the first step and if conflict persists, why not try keeping your cool. Take a deep breath, go for a walk, make a cuppa – do something for 5-10 minutes to help you calm down. Keeping your cool could help, maybe this issue will blow over and if not proceed to step 4.

  • 4. Face Conflict head on:

Of course we are not condoning physical violence or verbal abuse when we say to face office conflict head on. What we are saying is to ask for a quiet meeting with your fellow co-worker and explaining to them how they are making you feel. Odds are they had no idea and will apologise (happy days), if not then what we would recommend is go to step 5 & hopefully conflict resolution is found soon.

  • 5. Ask for Help:

If all else fails and you see no resolution in sight, it might be a good idea to recruit a fellow co-worker or perhaps a manager to mediate and advise. We hope it doesn’t come to this but we did say that we want to cover all of the basics. Remember this is what your HR officer is for, that is part of their job, so don’t be afraid to go to them.

There you have it, the easiest possible way to resolve office conflict. It can be a tricky thing. But there is always help and support systems around you if you ever do need them.

Hopefully this will help & we can all get along.

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