Follow the 5 ways method to win in every engagement at work.

You made a well thought through logical proposal to your boss. It was rejected. 

You sent a mail asking for support from another team. The answer was no.

You like the design in red and the agency insists on blue.

Any interaction with others – boss, teams, other departments, agencies, suppliers can lead to conflict. Sometimes a simple difference of opinion and sometimes a big difference in strategy.

What do you do when you feel you are about to lose ? 

Angry emails. Shouting matches. Ignoring the other side.

How can you turn these moments of conflict into collaboration.

First don’t send angry or complex or 3 page emails to explain your point. It wont work. Emails are like rabbits. They produce more emails, not solutions. When you see a situation of conflict developing , stop and write a simple message – “let us talk. I am setting up time”.

Second understand “who” disagrees with you and “who” is the key decision maker. Set up direct time with them – formally or informally to ask the question “what are all your concerns” and listen to the person carefully. 

Thirdly ask “how can we work together on this “ / “ how can we make it work”. Pause. Wait for the answer from the other side. 8 out of 10 times a good suggestion will emerge

Fourthly, from these conversations can you find any point, no matter how small upon which both sides can agree. It can be as simple as making a joint team or agreeing to start part of the project or agree to review it in 3 months etc

Fifthly derisk it for the other side. If you cannot get the full buffet ask for the starter. Can we pilot the project ? can we launch a limited quantity of the product ? can we do it in a scale and a way that it doesn’t hurt anyone ? 8 out of 10 times you will get a yes for a low risk trial of what ever it is that you are proposing.

Lastly credit the other person when you succeed. Share the credit liberally. Know that even if you did 99% of the work , without the 1% support from the other side you could not have succeeded.

Conflict can be turned into collaboration. 

Follow the 5 ways method to win in every engagement at work.

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