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职场必懂道理 别害怕跟人起冲突

2014-03-27    来源:网络    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

I once led an offsite with the top 100 leaders at a multinational chemical company. I was immediately struck by how humble, friendly, and polite this room full of engineers was. At one point, I decided to take a risk and let them know what a pleasant bunch of people they were, but that I wondered if their polite exterior might be masking conflicts that were simmering below the surface. A ripple of laughter went through the crowd. Embarrassed recognition?
我曾在一家跨国化工公司,带领100名高管参加远离工作的团队活动。这些工程师的谦逊、友好和礼貌一开始就让我非常吃惊。后来我决定冒一次险,让他们知道虽然他们都很友善,但我不知道在他们礼貌的外表下,是否掩盖了随时可能爆发的矛盾。人群中传来了一阵笑声。这算是尴尬的认同吗?

When I asked them to rate the quality of their relationships within the company, 88% responded that they belonged in the "dysfunctional family" category, full of unacknowledged conflicts.
当我要求他们对公司内的人际关系进行评价时,88%的员工表示,他们来自一个“问题家庭”,人与人之间充满了未公开的矛盾。

I wasn't surprised. Conflict avoidance is one of the most common -- and divisive --behaviors my company encounters at the companies we work with. Instead of dealing with differences of opinion and working collaboratively, people choke back what they think until the boss has left the meeting, or when they are alone with a clique of like-minded colleagues. Teams break down into small, polarized groups that pursue their own agendas.
对此我并不吃惊。在我们合作过的公司,我们最常见到的最具有争议的一种行为就是回避矛盾。人们不会去解决意见分歧,然后协同一致工作,而是会抑制内心的想法,直到老板离开会议现场,或者他们与志趣相投的同事在一起的时候,才会聊这些问题。团队分裂成许多两极分化的小团体,每个团体都只关注自己的目标。

Yet despite what seems like an epidemic of unhealthy behavior, a lot of management literature flirts with condoning such practices.
这似乎是一种不健康的传染行为,但许多管理类文章却容忍了这种做法。

In fact, most of today's literature about managing workplace conflict is based on a 40-year-old model developed by Kenneth Thomas and Ralph Kilmann in 1974, which cites avoidance as one of five main strategies people use to deal with conflict. But Thomas and Kilmann make clear that conflict avoidance prevents teams from collaborating on important decisions, which simply don't get made. That's hardly an effective strategy.
事实上,当下有关职场矛盾管理的大多数文章基础都是40年前的一种模型。1974年,肯尼斯•托马斯与拉尔夫•基尔曼开发了这个模型,其中将回避作为解决矛盾的五种主要策略之一。但托马斯与基尔曼曾明确表示,回避矛盾会妨碍团队在重要决策中相互协作,结果将导致决策失败。所以,这并不是有效的策略。

Few people enjoy confronting others. Just the thought of conflict sparks anxiety in most people. Yet such problems don't go away by themselves. They grow and fester.
没有人喜欢跟别人对立。大多数人甚至光是想到冲突就会开始紧张。但问题不会自己消失。它们只会日益恶化。

So what can you do?
那么,该怎么办呢?

Put everyone in the same boat
让所有人坐上同一艘船

The first step is to make sure individual business units' goals are aligned with the organization's goals. The larger the firm and the more diverse its products, the less likely these are to be aligned -- and the more likely competing goals are causing friction between employees. Make sure everyone's incentives are tied to the enterprise goals. Just telling employees that they need to put enterprise goals first is useless if their scorecard is solely dependent on the success of their little fiefdom. Ah, I mean business unit.
第一步是保证每个业务单位的目标与组织目标保持一致。公司规模越大、产品越多样化,保持这种一致的难度也就更高——相互矛盾的目标更有可能在员工之间造成摩擦。保证每个人的奖励与公司目标挂钩。告诉员工,他们需要将公司目标放在首位,除非他们的绩效仅仅取决于自己所在部门的成功。

Lynn Elsenhans, former CEO of Sunoco, notes that aligning employee goals and incentives with enterprise targets will level the playing field and make everyone part of the conversation.
太阳石油公司(Sunoco)前任CEO林恩•埃尔森汉斯表示,将员工的目标与奖励和公司目标挂钩将创造一个公平竞争的环境,让所有人都参与到对话当中。

"People may not, at the beginning, like each other, trust each other, or even think that the other person is worthy," says Elsenhans, "but if you make it the norm that everyone is accountable to the enterprise -- and that we come together to discuss problems and options for solving those problems -- you'll start to build a climate of mutual trust and respect. People begin to look at things differently. 'We are going to help each other to be successful so that the enterprise is successful.'" A natural outcome, she adds, is that people begin to feel they don't want to let each other down.
埃尔森汉斯说:“最开始,人们或许不会彼此喜欢,彼此信任,甚至认为别人一无是处。但如果公司培养所有人对公司的责任心,形成一种规范,例如所有人一起讨论问题,找出解决问题的可选解决方案,就会逐渐建立起一种相互信任和尊重的氛围。人们开始从不同的角度看待问题。‘我们要帮助彼此取得成功,进而让公司获得成功。’”她补充道,这样做会带来一种自然而然的结果,即人们会开始认为绝不能让彼此失望。

While Elsenhans' approach has the potential to reduce the number of conflicts that arise, it doesn't address the issue of how to have an out-in-the-open conflict with someone -- and come out feeling the warm glow of the proverbial "win-win."
埃尔森汉斯的方法虽然可能能够减少矛盾的数量,但却没有解决这样一个问题:如何应对与其他人公开的矛盾,最终获得所谓的“双赢”。

Separate the person from the problem
就事论事而非就人论事

A great resource for coaching your team to healthy issue resolution is Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, by Roger Fisher and William L. Ury. They stress the importance of keeping the focus squarely on the problem that the company or team is facing, rather than on the person who represents the other side in the disagreement, which merely escalates tensions and pulls the focus away from the problem.
如何培养团队以健康的方式解决问题?罗杰•费舍尔与威廉姆•L•尤里的《达成一致:无需让步的说服艺术》(Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In)一书就是很好的资源。该书的作者重点强调了直接关注公司或团队所面临的问题,而不是关注代表分歧另一方的个人,否则只会让矛盾升级,并分散人们对问题的关注。

Another key point they make is that people often become entrenched in either-or positions rather than working collaboratively and creatively to find solutions. Instead, coach your team to look beyond the positions and try to figure out what the other person's underlying interests are. Are they worried sales will decline if they follow the course you're proposing? Are they concerned customers will be angry? Do they fear their group's reputation will suffer? Positions can't always be reconciled. Interests often can be, write Fisher and Ury. When both sides' underlying interests have been uncovered, energies can be directed toward finding a solution that meets everyone's most important needs.
他们提到的另外一个主要观点是,人们往往会固执地坚持非此即彼的立场,而不是展开创造性地合作,寻找解决方案。相反,要培训团队走出自己的立场去考虑问题,努力判断其他人的根本利益。他们是否担心按照你所提议的程序会导致销量减少?他们是否担心引发客户不满?他们是否担心团队的信誉会受到影响?费舍尔和尤里曾写道,立场或许始终无法协调,但利益却可以调和。如果明确了矛盾双方的根本利益,就可以把精力用于寻找一种解决方案,来满足所有人最重要的需求。

Bring up tough issues
提出棘手的问题

Plainly discussing topics that might prompt a negative reaction from a coworker -- or worse, a boss -- not only takes courage, it's usually most successful when the whole firm, from top to bottom, is committed to doing it. But the potential benefits are significant.
坦诚地讨论可能引起同事、(甚至更糟糕的是引起)老板负面反应的问题,需要的不仅仅是勇气。如果整个公司能够自上而下坚持这种做法,往往能取得最大的效果。同时还有巨大的潜在好处。

When Reuters and Thompson merged in 2008, CEO Devin Wenig knew that the real challenge would be bringing together the two formerly competing staffs -- a total of 50,000 employees in 93 countries. The potential for a toxic environment was huge. But from my first discussion with Wenig, I knew he was committed to creating a group that would not let each other fail.
2008年路透社(Reuters)与汤普森集团(Thompson)合并时,CEO德文•维尼格很清楚,真正的挑战是如何整合两批之前相互竞争的员工——两家公司共有50,000名员工,遍及93个国家。有害环境的潜在影响是巨大的。不过,在与维尼格进行第一次讨论时,我便知道,他决定打造一个不会让对方失望的团队。

"Building a cohesive team is my No. 1 priority," said Wenig. "I want to build a team where people feel they can get the best out of each other … and know that everybody else has their back."
维尼格说:“打造一支有凝聚力的团队是我的首要任务。我希望打造的团队,是让人们感觉能够最大程度发挥彼此的才能,并且知道始终有其他人在背后支持自己。”

After a first session in which Wenig's own staff opened up and began to see each other as nuanced human beings with strengths and weaknesses, we took it to the next level: establishing an environment where it was okay for people to call each other out. One executive called out Wenig himself for being distracted at times when approached about a problem. Despite the executive's fear that he'd overstepped a line, Wenig not only took the criticism and changed his behavior, but other employees expressed their gratitude that he'd brought up an issue that was on their minds.
经过第一阶段,维尼格自己的员工开始打开心扉,把彼此看成是有细微差别的正常人,所有人都有自己的优缺点。之后是第二阶段:创造一种环境,让人们可以向别人提出意见。比如,一位高管就批评维尼格在解决问题的时候总是不能集中注意力。虽然这位高管担心自己的行为有越界之嫌,但维尼格不仅接受了对方的批评,改变了自己的行为, 而且其他员工也感谢这位高管,因为他提出了他们一直敢怒不敢言的问题。

Not all companies are ready to make as full a commitment to being candid, but every team leader can take steps toward establishing a more honest -- and supportive -- culture. The potential upside in team cohesion and productivity is enormous.
并不是所有公司都愿意接受这种坦白的做法,但每一位团队领导者可以采取措施,建立一种更加诚实和支持性的文化。它将有益于培养团队凝聚力,大幅提高工作效率。



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