Conflict resolution is one of the more critical responsibilities of managers in virtually every business, as rifts created between employees or departments can have significantly negative consequences before long, and will no doubt intensify when not aggressively approached by leaders. From decreased productivity and employee morale to more dangerous issues such as violent outbursts or a generally hostile workplace that serves as nothing more than a liability, conflicts can be negative subversions for any business.

In many ways, managers and supervisors who are working on the ground level of the company will be the most responsible for resolving these issues as they proliferate, and preventing them whenever possible. As such, decision-makers in the C-suite should seriously consider deploying management training programs that specifically focus on conflict resolution and how to handle tricky, dangerous situations without putting the business at risk. 

Bullies abound
CIO Magazine recently reported that a wealth of individuals have been on the losing end of a bullying experience at their companies in the past, citing a study conducted by CareerBuilder that found 28 percent of more than 3,300 respondents have lived through this in the workplace. According to the news provider, the damage does not stop there, as a total of one-fifth of workers who were surveyed stated that they actually left their jobs as a direct result of feeling bullied. 

Now, it is worth noting that managers cannot expect to completely eradicate bullying from their workplace in one flick of the wrist, but instead have to understand that it is a persistent issue that demands consistent attention. The source explained that one disheartening problem is that many companies will simply shy away from the fact that bullying exists, subsequently not taking any steps to prevent the problem or try and control the damage should an incident occur. 

However, CIO Magazine suggested that companies can take the proverbial bull by the horns by creating a more seamless reporting process, and ensuring that managers and supervisors respond to these complaints as quickly as possible. After all, the worst instances of these problems will be those that fly under the radar for longer periods of time, leaving the victim alone and helpless while the bully rages on. 

Types of training to help
Effective conflict resolution can help people manage challenging situations, including bullying and other issues among staff members. However, businesses can often improve their managers' abilities to fluidly handle these events through the following types of training:

  • Experiential: By putting managers into mock situations of sorts, they will be more likely to understand the challenges and demands of conflict resolution than they would by simply reading through a manual. 
  • Professional lecture: Businesses can bring in outsourced conflict resolution trainers and experts to ensure that their managers are getting all of the right knowledge necessary to stifle these problems as they proliferate. 

Above all else, companies must recognize the dangers of workplace bullying and merits of training managers in conflict resolution before a major issue occurs.