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Conflict in the workplace: DiSC profiles and related readings

Everything DiSC Productive Conflict map

Everything DiSC Productive Conflict map of priorities

Conflict often makes the top ten list of worries for managers, businesses, and even families. Letting conflict go too far can even lead to retaliation. Having a plan for dealing with conflict, or preventing it in the first place, can make your company a place where people enjoy working hard and creatively.

Suggested DiSC resources:


Everything DiSC Conflict Map from The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team

Everything DiSC Conflict Map from The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team

An Exercise to Help Your Team Feel More Comfortable with Conflict, Harvard Business Review, March 2019
“The ability to get issues on the table and work through them constructively is critical to having a healthy culture.”

Understanding Why We Overreact at Work, Harvard Business Review, December 2017
“If you have ever had an emotional reaction to someone which was clearly too intense for the situation, you have most likely experienced a transference reaction.”

3 Effective Strategies to Manage Workplace Conflict, Harvard Extension School
“There’s no way to avoid tension altogether, of course. But if you are capable of carefully navigating and resolving such discord, you’ll find you can improve dynamics for yourself and your team—and together you can deliver the results you strive for.”

Should You Share Your Feelings During a Work Conflict? Harvard Business Review, December 2017
“And the real issue is not whether you reveal your emotions or not. What’s most important is that you have the ability to choose whether or not to share your feelings.”

How People with Different Conflict Styles Can Work Together, Harvard Business Review, July 2017
“The avoiders among us shy away from disagreements, value harmony and positive relationships, and will often try to placate people or even change the topic. Avoiders don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or disrupt team dynamics.”

Why Workplace Conflict Can Be Healthy, SHRM HR Magazine, April 2017
“Negative conflict, characterized by struggling against other people, drains energy, which is costly to companies, teams and relationships.”

How to Preempt Team Conflict, Harvard Business Review, June 2016
“Early discussions should touch on not only the risks of venting but also the danger of bottling things up. The tendency to signal irritation or discontent indirectly—through withdrawal, sarcasm, and privately complaining about one another—can be just as destructive as volatile outbursts and intimidation.”

Workplace Conflicts? 4 Ways to Improve Communication, Business News Daily, February 2016
“If clashing personalities are the root cause of a lot of your team’s problems, work on being more aware of the differences in how you view a situation.”

How Leaders Can Best Manage Conflict Within Their Teams, Entrepreneur, June 2015
“Educate your team on these points, and then help them to shift their perspective by doing this team-building exercise.”

Dealing with conflict in the workplace, The Washington Post, May 2015
“Workplace conflicts can emerge in any number of forms, but there are some general, garden-variety types that I see on a repeated basis: conflicts with the boss, conflicts with peers and conflicts among a manager’s direct reports or teammates.”

Brene Brown On the Right Way to Argue at Work, Inc, March 2015
“The best thing to do when you’re arguing is to not focus on winning, but instead to listen to the other person’s story and address what he or she thinks is the source of the original conflict.”

Nice Managers Embrace Conflict, Too, HBR Blogs, October 2013
“And even in the day-to-day, workplace conflict is still inevitable because organizations are full of bright, ambitious people with different points of view, controversial ideas, and disparate values. There’s no way that we can get along with everyone all the time.”

How to Handle Workplace Conflict: One Simple Suggestion, The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 2013
“Sometimes, when conflicts arise between colleagues, things get said (or written) that should probably be left unexpressed. Or to put it another way, concerns and objections are not always communicated in the most appropriate way.”

Study suggests sleep deprivation can influence professional behaviour, Therapy Toronto News, August 28, 2012
“One of the sleep-deprived subjects responded with an unprofessional, personal attack. This is just one example Ellis and Christian cite to demonstrate how sleep deprivation reduces self-control and increases hostility.”

10 Tips for Tackling the Toughest Workplace Conflicts, U.S.News, July 2012
“Each employee possesses a unique set of attitudes, ideals, and beliefs that may differ from that of their co-workers. Sometimes, these personal differences can lead to conflicts in the office. Here are 10 tips for resolving workplace disputes…”

Conflict Keeps Teams at the Top of Their Game, Harvard Business Review, July 2012
“For instance, rivalry within a team helps weed out inefficiencies and — however uncomfortable it may feel at times — also keeps people at the top of their game. Besides, high performers are naturally competitive and to not allow them to express their competitive nature is to deny them something that is very much part of who they are.”


TED, June 2012
“Most people instinctively avoid conflict, but as Margaret Heffernan shows us, good disagreement is central to progress. She illustrates (sometimes counterintuitively) how the best partners aren’t echo chambers — and how great research teams, relationships and businesses allow people to deeply disagree.”

Patrick Lencioni on conflict


Leading Through Conflict, HRB Ideacast, August 2006
Mark Gerzon, mediation expert and author of Leading Through Conflict: How Successful Leaders Transform Differences into Opportunities.


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