Disagreements over the direction of a company’s growth, staffing, resource allocation, implementation of new protocols, project management, prioritization of goals and tasks to be completed and all the efforts and energy necessary to an organization’s success are not only common but necessary.

To expect all people within an organization to view any situation in the same manner is highly unrealistic. Each individual’s strengths help to support the strengths of the others in the organization. Well-managed conflict resolution processes often can lead the company to grow in desired ways.

For example, let’s take the story of Eugene and Mary. Eugene and Mary are business partners in an engineering firm. The firm just earned a $20,000 bonus for completing a project ahead of time. Eugene wants to invest the additional income in capital equipment that will enhance the firm’s capabilities to attract larger projects. Mary believes the best use for these extra funds is to expand the firm’s marketing protocols to attract larger projects.

Both Eugene and Mary have the same objective, but see the path to success in very different ways. So, Eugene and Mary consult with their company CPA and outside business strategist to create a plan for long-term expansion that satisfies both of their vision and business objectives. Five years later the firm has expanded beyond Eugene’s and Mary’s expectations.

Similarly, this is the story of Susan, Joe and Marty. Marty’s company is a small contracting firm. Susan is his chief contracting manager and Joe works for Susan. Joe recently lost his wife and has two small children. He is frequently late to work during this period of transition and mourning and Susan has to do his work as well as her own. Susan also is a single parent and is feeling really stressed. Marty, who is trying to grow his business, just wants the work to get done. Susan and Joe work out an alternative schedule, where Joe stays late to complete his assignments. Within a few months the working environment has returned to normal with the work getting done in a timely manner.

What happens, however, when the parties in these situations are not able to work out their differences? Productivity drops, morale deteriorates and the bottom line is negatively affected.

The next several entries to my blog, Conflict Is A Fact Of Life, will address the topics related to conflict in the work-place. To learn more about how the Mediation and Conflict Resolution Consulting services of Keystone Conflict Solutions LLC can bring value to the effectiveness of your work-place environment, contact us at or (404) 314-7228.

Information for this series on work-place conflict comes from the following sources:

  • “The Leaky Bottom line: the hidden cost of conflict in the workplace”, by Yvette Durazo

  • “The Hidden Cost of Workplace Conflict”, by Steve McGuire

  • “Cause and Effect: How Conflict Is Impacting Your Bottom Line”, by Radek Cecha

  • “Cost of Conflict: Why Silence is Killing Your Bottom Line”, from Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High, by Kerry Patterson

  • “Is Workplace Conflict Having An Impact On Your Bottom Line” by Sue Lingard”

  • “What Causes Employee Conflict in the Workplace?” by Rose Johnson

  • “What Causes Conflict Between Employees in an Organization?” by Grace Ferguson

  • “Examples of Conflicts & Resolutions in the Workplace” by David Ingram

  • “Major Causes of Conflict” by George N. Root III

  • “Causes of Organizational Conflict” by George N. Root III

  • “Eight Sources of Conflict”, by Chris Joseph

  • “Ways of Managing Conflict in Organizations”, by David Ingram

  • “Examples of Employer & Employee Conflict” by Melissa Cooper

  • “The Real Cost of Workplace Conflict”, by Jennifer Lawler

  • “Five Types of Conflict Resolutions Strategies”, by Erin Schreiner

  • “Positive & Negative Consequences of Conflict in Organizations” by Daphne Adams

  • “The Effects of Positive Conflict Resolutions in Organizations” by Dana Sparks

  • “Five Levels of Organizational Conflict” by Lori Soard