Constructive Conflict Management
June 8, 2022 — 2:30-3:45 p.m.
Gary McDougall begins this session with a discussion about why difficult people act as they do. The discussion then transitions into the need for professionalism and McDougall offers strategies for managing our own emotions as well as the strong emotions commonly encountered in others during difficult interactions. The session also explores the need to focus on inquiry (seeking information) as opposed to advocacy (providing information) as a conflict-management strategy. The session includes a presentation of active listening skills and other tangible tools for managing conflict constructively and concludes with a strategy for defusing angry and verbally aggressive people.
Participants will learn how individual perceptions, assumptions, and mindsets affect thoughts, behaviours, attitudes, and ultimately, the outcome of interpersonal interactions. Participants will recognize the need for professionalism and learn strategies for managing their own anger during difficult interactions and strategies for managing strong emotions in others. They will also gain an understanding of the value and application of active skills, including paraphrasing, labelling emotion, empathic responding, summarizing, confronting statements, using “I” messages, using silence, and employing several strategic questioning techniques. As a final module, participants will be provided with a verbal strategy for defusing angry and escalated people.