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10 Tips for Managing Conflict in the Workplace

5

Don't Personalize or Internalize Disagreements

Just like you, other people have bad days and say things they don't mean. Don't take every criticism or disagreement as a personal attack.
Just like you, other people have bad days and say things they don't mean. Don't take every criticism or disagreement as a personal attack.
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Don't take it personally. No, really -- don't take it personally. Try not to take someone's conflicting opinion as a negative assessment of you as a person or as a co-worker. It's natural for co-workers to have different feelings about projects. If someone has a different perspective, it isn't necessarily an indictment of your abilities as a human being or even as a worker.

Be open to constructive criticism, and keep in mind that turning a conflict into a learning situation may greatly benefit your career. However, if the other party is clearly making personal attacks on you, it's best to walk away from the situation.

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You could, of course, respond with a personal attack of your own. Doing so is not only unprofessional but could escalate the situation to uncomfortable heights with long-term negative consequences. If the attacks on you continue, document them and consider reporting the situation to a manager or the human resources department.

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