How Workplace Conflict Is Killing Your Bottom Line

November 9, 2012

Failure to speak up about concerns, or inability to properly deal with conflict, can have real financial consequences. Encouraging candid dialogue can reduce tensions and boost productivity.

Some conflicts are hot, simmering with hurt feelings, suspicion and verbal sparring. However, most workplace conflict is cold. Resentments are clutched close to the vest, disagreements are quietly acted out rather than talked out, and mistrust is passed in whispers to third parties rather than confronted face to face.

Research by corporate training and organizational performance company VitalSmarts shows that 95 percent of the workforce struggles to confront colleagues and managers about concerns and frustrations. As a result, workers engage in resource-sapping avoidance tactics including ruminating excessively about crucial issues, complaining to others, getting angry, doing extra or unnecessary work and avoiding the other person altogether.

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