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Recovery from Conflict

Prepared by Joan Rinner, Cynthia Joyce, and Craig Porter

Often, when individuals are involved in significant workplace conflict, they have a difficult time accepting the outcome of the conflict, repairing their relationships, and regaining a positive and productive attitude at work. Not only can this pattern be very difficult for the individual, it can have negative effects on the work unit and the organization as a whole.

This document is intended to help individuals acknowledge the ending of a conflict, come to terms with their negative emotions about the situation, and move on to contribute productively in the workplace. It also is designed to help supervisors, Human Resources representatives, and other campus resources help individuals recover from conflict and restore equilibrium to work units.

The University encourages faculty and staff to use all available resources to help them manage conflicts effectively. The concepts and resources in this document can be used at any point in the process of conflict management but especially when the individual involved believes that no further action to resolve a conflict is possible or productive.

 

GOAL

To help individuals recover from a challenging conflict resolution process and regain a positive attitude.


THE ISSUE

A faculty or staff member has experienced significant conflict in the workplace, has explored a number of resources, has exhausted all resources or chosen to end the process, and, regardless of the outcome of the conflict, perceives a continued negative impact on his/her health and wellbeing. The following may occur:

 

ILLUSTRATIONS OF THE ISSUE

 

POTENTIAL OUTCOMES FOR INDIVIDUALS OR THE WORKPLACE

An individual's inability to recover from a difficult conflict situation can have a number of effects on that person and on others in the workplace. Effects on the individual include the following:

Effects on the workplace include the following:

 

SELF-ASSESSMENT/DEBRIEFING TOOL

These questions can be used by individuals to assess their recovery from conflict or by a supervisor, HR rep, or other campus resource in a face-to face debrief meeting with the individual. Each question is followed by resources that might be helpful depending on the answer.

Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling


Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling

Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling
Career Advising


Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling


Health care provider
UI Wellness

Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling

Opportunity to talk about situation
Referral to needed resources (Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program, Career Advising, etc.)

Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling

Faculty and Staff Services/Employee Assistance Program
Outside counseling
Mediation through Ombuds Office

 

TIPS FOR RECOVERY FROM CONFLICT

 

HELP FOR THE SUPERVISOR OR HR REPRESENTATIVE

Helping an individual recover from a difficult conflict experience can be very challenging. Here are some ideas that may help supervisors, HR reps and others.


Additional support is available online through myquickcoach.

 

FOLLOW UP

A follow up meeting with a supervisor, HR rep or other to check in with an individual about recovery efforts may be very helpful. It is important to be clear, however, that this is not an opportunity to continue to raise issues about the original conflict.

 

RESOURCES/NEXT STEPS

 

updated May 22, 2014