When you have two individuals at odds, and each is valuable to the organization, knowledgeable, experienced, and compatible with everyone but each other, what do you do?
I'm in the process of writing a new book: Coming To Center, An Aikido Guidebook for Managers with Employees in Conflict.
The book illustrates a four-phase model I use when I'm invited to coach employees who are in conflict with each other and can't find their way out.
If this has happened in your team or organization, you may have tried:
- The pep talk: Come on, now, you can do this. Rise above it.
- The appeal to compassion and empathy: Try not to take things so personally; see things from their perspective.
- The common-sense approach: Your work is suffering. Something has to change. You don't have to be best friends, but you do have to work together and get the job done.
You may have also tried evading, ignoring, and hoping the situation will resolve itself. You’ve probably brought the topic up at performance reviews and talked to colleagues, coaches, and consultants. And yet the problem persists.