Employees and managers who know how to tackle work-related conflict in an effective manner can save time, energy and frustration, experts say. And they might even save their organizations a little money.
The authors of the New York Times best-selling book Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High (McGraw-Hill, 2002) conducted an online poll in March 2010 with the help of VitalSmarts, an organizational performance consultancy, in an effort to quantify the costs of conflict.
Respondents were asked how long it takes to have a crucial conversation—a discussion among two or more people where “stakes are high, opinions vary and emotions run strong.” A third of the 656 North American respondents said such conversations take a half an hour or less, while 29 percent said they take up to an hour and 22 percent said they take one to two hours.
But many workers put off such conversations in an effort to avoid further conflict.
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