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tor. The mediator’s role is to guide and mentor not to judge or rule. Sometimes they have to be politely reminded of this. Here are a few examples of ground rules:  We will listen to each other’s statements fully before responding  We will respect and solicit the input from everyone at the table  We will work together to achieve a mutually acceptable solution  We will respect each other as individuals and therefore not engage in personal insults and attacks  We agree that we are all looking for solutions to meet the same goal Participants can use the ground rules during the conflict resolution process to monitor and modify their behaviors. The ground rules give participants an objective and logical way of addressing personal attacks and emotional issues. An example of this is “Peter, I feel like you have cut off my last several statements. We agreed at the beginning of this that we would listen to each other’s statements fully before answering. Can I request that you do that please.” Ground rules ensure a level playing field and hold everyone around the table to the same standard of behavior, they help maintain fairness and avoid bias. Conflict Resolution Styles There are five widely accepted styles for resolving conflicts. These concepts were originally developed by Kenneth Thomas and Ralph Kilmann in the 1970s. Although I always recommend the collaborative style of conflict resoConflict can simply lution, there may mean a difference be instances in approach when it is not the most appropriate. For example, in an emergency the collaborative style may not reach a decision quickly enough. It is important to under-

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BARKS from the Guild/July 2014

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stand each of the five styles so you can use them appropriately. Knowing what style to use in each situation is an important part of successful conflict resolution. 1. The Collaborating Style With the collaborating approach all parties work together to develop a win-win solution. This approach promotes assertiveness over aggressiveness or passiveness. The collaborative style is appropriate when: • The situation is not urgent • An important decision needs to be made • The conflict involves a large number of people, or persons across different teams • Previous conflict resolution attempts have failed The collaborative style is not appropriate when: • A decision needs to be made urgently • The matter is trivial to all involved

2. The Competing Style With a competitive approach the person in conflict takes a firm stand and they compete with the other parties for power. They typically win unless they are up against someone else who is also competing. This style is seen as being very aggressive and can cause other people in the conflict resolution process to feel injured or stepped on. The competing style is appropriate when: • A decision needs to be made quickly, such as in emergencies • An unpopular decision is being made • An individual is trying to take advantage of a situation This style is not appropriate when: • People are feeling sensitive about the conflict • The situation is not urgent • The conflict resolution process needs to build collaboration

3. The Compromising Style When using the compromising approach, each person in the conflict agrees to gives up something, they actively contribute towards the conflict resolution. The compromising style is appropriate when: • A decision needs to be made sooner rather than later (meaning the situation is important but not urgent) • Resolving the conflict is more important than

Profile for The Pet Professional Guild

BARKS from the Guild Summer 2014  

Your BARKS summer edition. The quarterly publication from The Pet Professional Guild

BARKS from the Guild Summer 2014  

Your BARKS summer edition. The quarterly publication from The Pet Professional Guild