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Why Everyone at Work Needs Conflict Management Skills (and how you can get them)

Conflict Remedy Blog by Lorraine Segal

Group home counselor, Executive Chef, Senior help desk technician, quality assurance specialist, RN Director of case management, Care Partner, commercial real estate field assistant, Title 9 investigator and training specialist, , Supplier Quality Engineer, Call Center Coordinator, Respite Center on-call advocate, HR representative ( lumber company), HR Director (Coffee and tea  company), Restaurant manager, Regional Bank Supervisor, , home warranty products authorization supervisor, power plant manager,  customer service supervisor , RCFE Resident Services Director, back office services supervisor, Fuel station manager, marketing director, Shift lead at fast food franchise, Home Therapies Dialysis Nurse (RN), Residence Life & Housing Coordinator, Scrum Master

What do all these jobs have in common? In job descriptions posted in March and April this year on Indeed, each of these job announcements include conflict resolution or conflict management as required or desirable skills.

People now who are looking for jobs or wanting promotions across a range of industries and job titles need to take conflict management skills seriously. So do people in frustrating work situations who can’t afford to leave.

As a conflict management professional, I have been telling clients and students for a long time, thatwherever there are groups of people, conflict and misunderstanding are inevitable. And, it doesn’t have to be a tragedy, because people at work, whether leaders or employees, can learn to navigate conflict effectively, and help create a productive and harmonious workplace.

So how do people learn and demonstrate they have these conflict resolution skills?
I’ve given this question a lot of thought over the years as a student and a teacher of these and related topics, and as an individual coach of managers, CEOs, and employees struggling with difficult coworkers. Individual coaching can help. Training in skills and awareness can help. A certificate providing proof of this training is concrete evidence you can show a supervisor or potential employer!

A new conflict management program

Two years ago, I was invited to create a new conflict management professional development certificate program at Sonoma State University which meets this need. The question was–What could we offer (in 12 weeks) that would give leaders and employees, including HR professionals, managers and aspiring managers, team leads, and co-workers a solid foundation of skills and awareness for better communication and conflict management at work?

I am pleased and proud to announce that we did it! SSU’s new 12 week Conflict Management certificate program will begin September 13th! In my opinion, it is practical, visionary, and powerful! Mini lectures, discussions, interactive and introspective exercises, multi media, and guest experts are all part of the experience. Weekly topics answer questions such as:

  • What is conflict anyway?
  • How can I have a successful conversation on a difficult topic or with a difficult person?
  • How can I give and receive feedback in positive and affirming ways?
  • How do misunderstandings and assumptions about gender, generations, race, ethnicity and other differences create unnecessary conflict and miscommunication? And how can I shift that?
  • How can I recognize and stop workplace bullying?
  • What are the basics of negotiation and mediation and when are they useful?
  • How can I facilitate a meeting or participate in a way that promotes efficiency and success?

Skills in workplace conflict management are becoming increasingly important for individual success and for successful corporations, non-profits, and government entities. You can be part of the solution.


Lorraine Segal

After surviving the 50's and 60's, as well as twenty years in toxic academia as a tenured professor, Lorraine Segal was inspired to started her own business, Conflict Remedy (, happily teaching, coaching, blogging and consulting around workplace conflict transformation. She is addicted to reading novels and enjoys walking and… MORE >

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