Handling Conflict · A professional development program

Handling Conflict - a professional development program

Course Description

Conflict is an inevitable dynamic in the work environment. Unfortunately, it usually carries a negative connotation. Conflict, in and of itself, is neither “good” nor “bad”. What makes a conflict situation productive or destructive is the way in which issues and information are analyzed, approached, and communicated. Successful teams and managers have the ability to not only address but utilize differences in a way that increases the overall strength of the team. This conflict resolution class teaches the skills and perspectives that are necessary to effectively manage conflicts in the workplace.

Most people view conflict as being highly personal in nature. In this conflict resolution class, participants will explore the true definition of conflict, and how this definition can help them better analyze and understand a challenging situation or person. They will also examine the role of personal power and how it influences the level and outcome of a conflict.

Next, participants complete the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument. Through this instrument, they will gain insight into their preferred mode of managing conflicts in the workplace. They will also gain exposure to, and a better understanding of, the preferred approaches of others in a conflict situation. Working in small groups, they will then explore the best approaches to different types of conflicts, and discuss how their preferred approach can be adapted to best manage the situation.

Next, participants in this conflict resolution class will be introduced to the Stop, Yield, Go Model for handling conflicts. This is a three-step process that they can use to keep their approach and communication focused and on track so that the conflict is resolved in a productive manner. Participants will identify a conflict situation that they are currently experiencing or anticipate experiencing in the near future. They will then work through the conflict using the three steps. In each step, participants will be engaging in activities and discussions regarding the following topics: assertive language techniques, the power of inquiry and advocacy, and how to effectively manage difficult responses. Working with a partner, participants will obtain additional feedback and insight on how to manage their conflict in the workplace situation. This will provide participants with a detailed and complete action plan that they can implement immediately.


After completing this conflict resolution class, you will be able to:

  • Define conflict.
  • Recognize the five styles of conflict resolution and how to best adapt your style and approach to a conflict situation.
  • Understand your preferred style of conflict resolution.
  • Apply the Stop, Yield, Go Model to collaborative conflict resolution.
  • Apply techniques to managing emotions during conflict.
  • Explain assumptions and their effect on conflict.
  • Use active-listening skills to improve the working environment.
  • Apply assertive language techniques to express your needs and respect the needs of others.


This managing conflicts in the workplace course can be customized to meet a 4-hour or an 8-hour agenda.