Leadership Traits that Help Manage Conflict

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Updated: Jun 29, 2022
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Good Afternoon, my name is Marlee Parker. My business partner is Linda Hester. Thank you for joining us today as we begin the discussion on leadership traits that help manage conflict, strategies on how to improve communication in the workplace, and methods for motivating employees and improving employee behavior. We have a lot to discuss, however, I am confident you will find one or two strategies you can implement and immediately see positive changes in your employees. Let’s get started!

Managing conflict can be a tricky thing – especially when you are not familiar with the larger ecosystem in which the individual or department creating the conflict operates, and how efforts to resolve conflict will reverberate throughout that ecosystem.

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An important trait is timing. How soon a manager deals with and manages conflict can affect the overall team. If the manager is delayed in dealing with the issue or does not deal with the issue at all can cause the loss of respect from your peers and employees. Additionally, the leadership style is important. For decisions that need to be made immediately or in an emergency the autocratic style would be used to solve the problem. However, that does not mean the problem gets ignored. The leader must work to determine the cause of the issue then work with the team members to find a final resolution. Using a participative leadership style, and environment of cooperation and collaboration is fostered .

If the manager has active listening skills and they can quickly diagnose the problem and take prompt action to resolve disagreements which helps the team to develop skills to resolve conflict on their own. If your teams within your business are suffering from poor communication practices, there are strategies that can be implemented to begin the process of improvement. One strategy is to always give your undivided attention . Whether you are one on one or in a group setting, all distractions should be turned off and put away. It is important that the person or people you are speaking with have 100% of your attention. Take time to listen. If you are the only one talking people will begin to tune out. It is equally as important for you to actively listen and observe so you can engage your employees.

These two strategies alone can have a positive effect on your team. They will feel they are a part of the process and that they are valued.  Motivating employees is crucial to the success of any business. How we motive our employees is just as crucial; however, our leaders take the effort to get to know their employees so, the motivation techniques can be tailored to them specifically. Leadership should make expectations clear, provide continuous feedback, correct privately, believe in your employees, praise publicly and make rewards achievable. Of the six strategies, I believe providing continuous feedback and believing in your employees to be the most important. Providing positive and negative feedback real-time provides the employee with a gauge of where they are on performance scale. Often, the feedback is only brought to the attention of the employee when they have done something wrong.

After a period, if the employee has only received negative feedback, their motivation will diminish. Leadership should demonstrate their belief in their employees. Leadership can show their belief by assigning projects and pushing the employee out of their comfort zone. Leaders need to encourage professional (and even personal) growth. Leadership should speak to the persons potential. If the employee can see themselves as you see them, they will be fully engaged. Simply by implementing some of the strategies listed above, employee behavior will improve on its own. Each employee will know they have value to their team and to the company at large.

In conclusion, you can see there is an overlapping theme to the strategies we discussed. Leadership must have the ability to fluctuate between leaderships styles when the need arises. Management must be committed to their team and to the company. Remember, employee engagement, trust and your belief in their abilities is what will set your team apart from the others. Remember, keep your employees informed; be honest and forthcoming. Address situations immediately and provide follow-up, always. Praise often. If we are successful in making our employees feel valued, they will be motivated to excel every day.


  1.  https://www.forbes.com/sites/glennllopis/2014/11/28/4-ways-leaders-effectively-manage-employee-conflict/#4dc914bd5e15; 24 Ways Leaders Effectively Manage Conflict, Glenn Llopis, November 28, 2014.
  2.  https://smallbusiness.chron.com/leadership-vs-conflict-resolution-10581.html; Leadership Vs. Conflict Resolution; Tara Duggan.
  3. https://www.sandler.com/blog/5-strategies-improve-communication-workplace/; Sandler Blog; October 18, 2018
  4. https://davidburkus.com/2012/07/six-ways-to-drive-employee-performance-and-motivation/; Six Ways to Drive Employee Performance and Motivation; David Burkus; July 13, 2012
  5. https://www.stevefarber.com/three-ways-to-show-you-believe-in-others/; Three Ways to Show You Believe in Others; Steve Farber; May 19, 2017 
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Leadership Traits That Help Manage Conflict. (2022, Jun 24). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/leadership-traits-that-help-manage-conflict/