Conflict at the workplace is something that can’t be avoided, no matter how hard you try. In fact, the harder you try to avoid conflict the worse it becomes. Marcia Reynolds, an organizational psychiatrist with Arizona-based Covisioning LLC puts it this way, “Conflict is inevitable because we’re human beings and come from different backgrounds.”

Below you will find several ways you can resolve conflict at the workplace without breaking up relationships or causing unnecessary tension among coworkers.

Sharpen Your Communication Skills

The source of most conflicts come from lack of communication or misinformation. A quick way to resolve conflicts and minimize future conflicts at the workplace is to sharpen your communication skills and work with your co-workers to make sure everyone is on the same page. Quick, clear, accurate and timely information will do wonders to fix misunderstandings and confusion that can lead to workplace conflicts.

Don’t Let Emotions Drive Your Decisions

In a professional office, it’s important to keep your emotions in check and your temper under control. Many conflicts reach the point of getting out of hand because one or both of the parties involved take things to an emotional and personal level.

When you’re in the midst of a disagreement with a coworker, keep it strictly professional no matter how close you may be with that person or how much you know about their personal life. When you let your emotions drive your decisions, it can lead to brash and regrettable choices that can cost you relationships and damage the future of your career.

Deal With Conflicts Quickly

You may not always be able to prevent conflicts, but you do have the power to resolve them quickly and hit them head on. Never let a conflict simmer or wait until the next day or after the weekend. Avoiding confrontation in all areas of life never solves anything and only makes the problem worse.

Take the time to resolve a conflict as soon as it happens rather than waiting around for someone else to fix it. Conflicts generally don’t resolve themselves, so it’s better to minimize its severity sooner rather than later.

Pick Your Battles

An easy way to resolve conflicts at the workplace is learning how to let things go. A conflict as small as someone taking your stapler probably isn’t worth getting in an uproar about. Weigh the advantages and disadvantages of a conflict before you let your emotions take control and confront somebody.

On the same note, if a conflict is worthy of confrontation then you should take action and face your fears. Never be afraid of hurting someone’s feelings. As long as you address the issue in a respectful and professional manner, both parties can benefit from talking about the problem and finding the right solution.

For more tips on how to create a happy workplace, check out our latest blog post “Re-learn How to Take a True Vacation.”