Workplace Conflict Can Benefit Your Project Team in Many Ways

In most project teams, more members are unwilling to take part in a workplace conflict than are willing because use our workplace culture trains us that conflict is a negative thing.

So a worker would rather hold back their viewpoint than voice it for fear of annoying, hurting emotionally, intimidating, or threatening others.

Not many workplaces view conflict as a useful tool in finding multiple perspectives, scrutinizing and comparing their options or making better decisions, and much more.

Workplace conflict can help provide a better sense of direction to a project because it inspires brainstorming, discussions, and sometimes, reconsideration of options.

Obstacles to Productive Conflict in Project Teams

What are some of the obstacles to constructive conflict at work? Crews choose to stay silent and “follow orders from above” for many reasons.

A team that can’t stand a single conflict session without ruined relationships, annoyed seniors, misunderstood motives, or points can be said to have a poor workplace conflict culture.

workplace conflict

Here are some of the main reasons a team member would rather shut up that speak out their opinion.

  • Fear of ruining staff-staff relationships
  • They don’t know to conflict productively
  • Fear of harming others emotionally
  • A poor one-sided conflict culture where some people’s opinions don’t matter
  • Fear of standing up against their seniors

What are other reasons you don’t engage in conflict with your project teams or organizations?

Constructive Conflict Begins in the Mind

A professional attitude and mindset is key to ensuring you take part in meaningful conflicts at work.

Anyone who maintains a professional mindset is not intimidated by reasonable, thought-provoking arguments.

Always enter an interactive session ready to argue productively without letting emotions get the best of you. Be prepared to explore and to be perplexed by the different angles you never considered— it will help you brainstorm and grow.

A positive, open mindset also ensures you pick your words carefully because you are not acting out of anger.

If we can discuss “conflict” as a topic in our project teams and help everyone understand its vital role—and master the art, then maybe we can help change our mindset towards it.

How Conflict at Work Can Benefit a Team

So why are we spending lots of time discussing workplace conflict? What quality can it add to our projects if conducted constructively?

Well, here are the many pros of conflicting productively.

  1. You get different viewpoints: Meaningful workplace conflict opens a platform for discussing different points of view, which is useful in the brainstorming and decision-making process.
  2. Encourages creativity: Constructive conflict can inspire others to view matters in ways they’ve never before and help your teams get more creative.
  3. Fights the idea of thinking as a group: if everyone agrees to everything from above them, maybe all team members are thinking as a group. Productive conflicts are common in organizations where different angles and opinions matter.
  4. Helps teams come up with remedies to bigger problems: conflict offers multiple perspectives, sharing of concepts, and a platform for brainstorming on different options to fix bigger problems.
  5. Gives everyone a voice and a chance to speak: a workplace that understands the critical role of conflict and how to do it constructively inspires free speaking and expressing opinions.
  6. Inspires collaboration and teamwork: productive conflict maintains workplace rapports encouraging cooperation and respect among members.
  7. Cultivates productive workplace culture. Many of us are accustomed to the norm of unhealthy conflicts. Yet, it is not easy to develop and maintain healthy conflict at work. It takes time patience, and a change of mindset and the process can lead to behavior change.

Workplace conflict drives you forward, never underestimate the power of meaningful arguments in getting different angles, and making better decisions.

 Final Words 

Conflicting like professionals can improve your project team in many ways. Keeping emotions out, applying reason, and picking your words right can ensure you maintain a professional attitude when arguing at work.

Organizations should consider cultivating a productive workplace culture a shared responsibility to realize its full benefits.