Collaborate through conflict

Conflict will always exist, and it will exist in all realms of our life. There aren’t many ways and means to avoid it entirely but there are ways to work with and around conflict. If we have more than two people occupying a space or frame, there is bound to be conflict. 

Have you heard of the path of least resistance? Do you know what that means? What it entails to put into practice? I have had many instances of my life and relationships measure out how they work in terms of dealing with conflict and while I don’t essentially like it, I don’t shy away from it either… Resolving conflict is like sorting out and putting together a jigsaw puzzle, it’s got moments of absolute clarity and also absolute confusion and somewhere in-between comes reality and realism and when you get it right, it simply feels perfect and fits into the spaces. 

How can we collaborate better?

Learn to set aside egos: 

When we operate with an attitude of holier than thou and hold on to something that is fuelled by our egos, we will fail to collaborate. The bigger picture gets lost in translation and we tend to protect our own agendas. This is detrimental to teamwork and can derail the final outcomes. 

Look inwards and outwards: 

Collaboration isn’t a one-way street; we need to be able to think both ways – inside-out and outside in. What I mean by this is that we need to think holistically from multiple points of view and step outside our own boxes we have built around us which will help see the situation with a new lens. 

Get past the semantics: 

The small things don’t matter, and the semantics can take the focus away from the real issues at hand. We should know what priority is and can impact a project versus what is simply background noise. 

Welcome change:

Rigidity is a huge demon to fight as it does not let you go forward and holds you back from full potential. Change is the only constant and fighting it will not help us collaborate any better. Only when you are open to change, can you truly work with diverse people and teams. 

Be open to new ideas and thinking: 

This is again in some form rigidity and connected to change, when we can’t absorb or are resisting new ideas and new thought processes, we again set ourselves back from collaborating. Moving with the times and welcoming fresh approaches will help. 

Plan way ahead of time: 

When we have the luxury of time, we should utilise it to plan everything and prep for the outcomes we want to engineer. With great planning comes attention to detail and we are often better prepared for what could go wrong when we have a full hang of how we want to drive it. 

Be prepared for all eventualities: 

Things go wrong all the time; we need to calm down and deal with the problem rather than go the deep end and become negative and unable to handle the situation. Knowing that everything doesn’t always work in a way we want it to can also prepare us better for these circumstances. 

Finding the best way out will happen only when you get together and work together for success. You cannot run a team or be part of one without finding the path of least resistance and nurturing the best possible outcomes. 

In the work lives that we lead, we need to grow and thrive and find our tribes and work with the not so easy situations and find ways to feel great about the work we do and the organisations we are part of. 

Shreya Krishnan
Vice President - Marketing and Communications at Aon India Insurance Brokers
Shreya is a CSR Specialist and Corporate Grooming Consultant. Her interests lie in Activism, Dance, Theatre, Poetry, Blogging, Modelling, Acting. She considers herself an Earth Warrior and is an Event Anchor and Trainer. She is a Pageant Winner and public speaker.

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