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Managing Conflict. Insert your Totem here. Your name Troop Guide NE-II-177. Managing Conflict. Provide ground rules: Distribute handout Encourage note taking Feel free to ask questions at any time. 1A. Learning Objectives. Upon completion of this presentation you will have:

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Managing Conflict


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    1. Managing Conflict Insert your Totem here Your name Troop Guide NE-II-177

    2. Managing Conflict Provide ground rules: • Distribute handout • Encourage note taking • Feel free to ask questions at any time NE-II-177 1A

    3. Learning Objectives • Upon completion of this presentation you will have: • A better understanding of conflict from a leadership point of view. • Acquired new tools for successfully managing conflict situations. NE-II-177 2

    4. Learning Objectives • Upon completion of this presentation you will have: • A better understanding of conflict from a leadership point of view. • Acquired new tools for successfully managing conflict situations. NE-II-177 2A

    5. “The Scoutmaster” NE-II-177 3

    6. Consider the Norman Rockwell painting of the Scoutmaster. It is a starlit night and the boys are all asleep in their perfectly-pitched tents. The Scoutmaster, who looks like a cross between Cary Grant and John Wayne, is standing by the embers of the campfire. He is deep in contemplation, his face serene and satisfied. The message seems to be that the Scoutmaster is utterly competent in all that he does. On the other hand, the message could just as well be that the only moment of peace and quiet the poor man gets is when the entire troop is unconscious. Where was Rockwell earlier in the day when the Scoutmaster was shouting things like, “Hey, you kids stop poking that bear with that stick!” Where’s the painting of the Cubmaster trying to calm parents upset over the outcome of a Pinewood Derby? Where is the image of the Venture leader attempting to sort out the differences between several crew members on the first day of a two-week adventure? What about the district committee member confronted with a seemingly unresolvable argument between others on the committee? NE-II-177 3A

    7. Leadership • Is easy when everything is going well. • Most of the time it is managing conflict • by: • Finding common ground among individuals • Providing tools for people to settle their own disputes • Making unilateral decisions NE-II-177 4

    8. Leadership Leadership is easy when everything is going well, or when everybody is sound asleep. Much of the rest of the time, leadership involves managing conflict by finding common ground among individuals, providing tools for people to settle their own disputes, and on rare occasions stepping in to make unilateral decisions. NE-II-177 4A

    9. Conflict “A Hands-On Experience” NE-II-177 5

    10. Opening Exercise • Get with a partner • One of you makes a fist • The other tries to convince the first to open it. • You have two minutes • Ask: “What happened?” • Ask: “Was anyone successful?” “How?” • Ask: “What strategies did you try?” (Board their answers.) NE-II-177 5A

    11. Possible Strategies • Bribery • Concern • Persuasion • Interest • Straight-forwardness NE-II-177 6

    12. Possible Strategies • Bribery – “I’ll give you $5 if you open your fist.” • Concern – “It doesn’t matter to me if you open your fist, but unless you do you won’t be able to pick things up.” • Persuasion – “I like your hands better open than closed.” • Interest- “I’m curious to see what’s inside your fist.” • Straight-forwardness – “Hey, open your fist.” NE-II-177 6A

    13. What did we learn? We can’t make people do anything they don’t want to do! NE-II-177 7

    14. What did we learn? We can’t make people do anything they don’t want to do! If you ask a Scout or a co-worker or a family member or an adult colleague in Scouting to do something and they refuse, you can’t force them to do it. There must be boundaries and rules, of course, and we’ll talk about that in a moment, but the bottom line is you can’t coerce someone to do something. Think about one of the most basic conflict situations–a parent and a child. How do you convince a child of 5 or 6 that it is time to put away the toys and take a bath? (Let the group offer suggestions.) In that situation, many of us use all sorts of rewards-you can read a book after your bath, you can bring one toy into the tub, you can fire up the jets in the Jacuzzi, etc. But if that doesn’t work, what then? What if the child digs in and absolutely refuses to obey? Often that’s when we punish. Time out. Take away a toy. It is a “power over” situation. The same sort of situation often occurs with a boss and employee. It can occur with a leader and a Scout. NE-II-177 7A

    15. What did we learn? Ultimately, you can only empower yourself. Then, within boundaries, you can encourage others to act in certain ways. NE-II-177 8

    16. What did we learn? Ultimately, you can only empower yourself. Then, within boundaries, you can encourage others to act in certain ways. NE-II-177 8A

    17. Be Aware of Yourself • Why is the issue important to you? • Does it really matter? • Is there really a need? NE-II-177 9

    18. Be Aware of Yourself The first thing to do in any relationship, especially those that may involve conflict, is to look at ourselves. Why is the issue at hand important to you? In the great scheme of things, does it really matter whether the other person opens their fist? Does the child really need a bath? A Scoutmaster found himself nagging his Scouts on every campout to get busy with evening meal preparation so that they could eat supper at a reasonable hour. After this happened three or four times, he asked himself what was really at stake here. When he was honest about it, he realized that he wanted the meal on time because he was hungry then and eating late made him grumpy. On the next campout he took along a sandwich and a couple of granola bars, but kept them hidden from the Scouts. He said nothing to the Scouts as the afternoon lengthened into the evening, but when he felt himself getting hungry he walked a short distance from camp and had a snack. The Scouts procrastinated a little longer, but eventually they got hungry too, and in their own good time they prepared their meal and invited him to dine with them. NE-II-177 9A

    19. Be Aware of Yourself Self–Resolving Conflict - A situation that, if given time, will work itself out without confrontation or argument NE-II-177 10

    20. Be Aware of Yourself Self–Resolving Conflict What the Scoutmaster had stumbled upon was the self-resolving conflict– a situation that, if given time, will work itself out without confrontation or argument. The Scoutmaster realized that he was attempting to impose his schedule on a group that was in favor of the ultimate outcome, but resisted the time frame. When the Scoutmaster understood the larger picture and took steps to alter his role in it, the problem went away. NE-II-177 10A

    21. Be Aware of Others When are most people likely to do what you ask them to do, especially if it is something they are less than excited about? NE-II-177 11

    22. Be Aware of Others When are most people likely to do what you ask them to do, especially if it is something they are less than excited about? Board their answers then flip this page and compare their answers to the schooled answers. NE-II-177 11A

    23. Be Aware of Others When are people likely to do what you ask? • When they trust you. • When they have experience with you and have found you to be a reliable leader and ally. • When they understand that you are making decisions for the good of the group. • Most of all, when they sense that you care about them. NE-II-177 12

    24. Be Aware of Others When are people likely to do what you ask? • When they trust you • When they have experience with you and have found you to be a reliable leader and ally • When they understand that you are making decisions for the good of the group • Most of all, when they sense that you care about them Early in this Wood Badge course, we discussed the importance of Listening to Learn. Listening is the most important skill in resolving any conflict, whether the conflict involves you as a participant or as a moderator. Unless you make a conscious effort to listen, you will miss vital facts and beliefs that could lead to a satisfactory resolution. NE-II-177 12A

    25. Be Aware of Others Consider Both Sides NE-II-177 13

    26. Consider Both Sides Consider this story: A woman gets on an airliner. She is tired after a long business trip and just wants to get home. She has a window seat. A large man sitting by the aisle will not get up to let her reach her window seat. She struggles to get past him and sits down, very put out. But she wants to be polite. “Where are you going?” she asks the man. He doesn’t look at her, but in a gruff voice says, “Further than you, so don’t think I’m going to get up when you get off.” She feels herself become angry, but takes a deep breath and decides to get more information. She continues to press the man to talk to her, and discovers that he is just recovering from an automobile accident and that it is very difficult for him to get up and down from a seat. It frustrates him, and he is fearful about whether he will ever fully recover. The reality of the situation completely changed how the woman thought of the man’s action. They did not become the best friends, but she realized how her first impressions of him had been very wrong and that only through careful listening was she able to understand what was really going on. NE-II-177 13A

    27. Set the Scene for Cooperative Resolutions • Building relationships • Listen and pay attention to people • Share experiences • Look for common ground • Establish trust • Show involvement NE-II-177 14

    28. Set the Scene for Cooperative Resolutions Listening to people and paying attention to them is an essential step for establishing a relationship in which cooperation can occur. Think back to the “Who Me” Game we did earlier in this course. Think of how you and others in your patrol have shared information about yourselves with one another. Remember the experiences you have shared in the last few days. Those are all points of contact, connections that provide a foundation trust, understanding, and familiarity for further communication and, if necessary, for resolving conflicts. NE-II-177 14A

    29. Set the Scene for Cooperative Resolutions LISTEN TO THEM Show Involvement NE-II-177 15

    30. Set the Scene for Cooperative Resolutions In real estate the rule of thumb is: Location!Location! Location! In leadership, and especially when dealing with conflict, the bottom line is: Involvement! Involvement! Involvement! As a leader, the more you have shared with those you lead, the greater your chances of finding cooperative resolutions for conflicts. Developing that kind of connection cannot happen overnight, though. It is one of the ongoing challenges and rewards of good leadership. NE-II-177 15A

    31. The Most Important Question What do you want? NE-II-177 16

    32. The Most Important Question What do you want? Whenever you are working with people, the most important question to ask them is “What do you want?” Think about that. When was the last time somebody asked you that? When was the last time someone listened to your answer? For example, as a presenter I really want this presentation to go well. But if it isn’t going well, then what? What can I do? I can lash out at you, demand that you pay attention. I can start crying. I can plead with you to cheer me on. I can just run away and leave you all behind. Or I might even be so bold as to ask all of you for suggestions about how this could go better. So the first question in working with someone is … What Do You Want? NE-II-177 16A

    33. The Most Important Follow-up Questions Once you’ve gotten the answer to “What Do You want?” there are three follow up questions: • What are you willing to do to get what you want? • Is what you are doing working? • Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 17

    34. The Most Important Follow-up Questions Once you’ve gotten the answer to “What Do You want?” there are three follow up questions: • What are you willing to do to get what you want? • Is what you are doing working? • Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 17A

    35. Questions for Conflict Resolution 1) What do you want? 2) What are you doing to get it? 3) Is it working? 4) Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 18

    36. Questions for Conflict Resolution 1) What do you want? 2) What are you doing to get it? 3) Is it working? 4) Do you want to figure out another way? Think about the power of these questions when asked in this order. The first one focuses people’s attention on what their real needs are, and helps you see more clearly other people’s point of view. The subsequent questions put responsibility on other people to be a party in examining where they are and then in finding pathways to reach where they want to be. Questions #2 and #3 are vital. Don’t skip them. They are questions that empower people. Give people the time and encouragement to figure out the answers, to understand their own path. NE-II-177 18A

    37. Questions for Conflict Resolution 1) What do you want? 2) 3) 4) Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 19

    38. Questions for Conflict Resolution Too often we as leaders skip #2 and #3. We ask, “What do you want?” and then jump immediately to a variation of #4, telling someone what we think they should do. Questions #2 and #3 help people figure things out on their own and discover their own path. Question #4 gives them a way to invite you to help them explore other approaches to a problem. It encourages a cooperative effort-working together to help everyone get what he or she wants. Remember, you can’t control another person-you can’t open the fist of a person who refuses to open it. But you can persuade. You can join forces with them in a mutual search. You can encourage them to become active seekers after meaningful answers. 1. What do you want? 4. Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 19A

    39. Questions for Conflict Resolution 1) What do you want? 2) What are you doing to get it? 3) Is it working? 4) Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 20

    40. Questions for Conflict Resolution 1) What do you want? 2) What are you doing to get it? 3) Is it working? 4) Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 21A

    41. Effective Communication in Conflict Situations • What do you want? • What do you want? • What do you want? • What do you want? NE-II-177 21

    42. Effective Communication in Conflict Situations In the Wood Badge session on Communications, we talked about the fact that there is much more to conveying a message than simply repeating words. Body language sends powerful messages, as does tone of voice. For example, I can ask the most important question four different ways and convey at least four different messages about my attitude and my willingness to work together toward a solution: • What do you want? What do you want? • What do you want? What do you want? Professional conflict mediators are trained to manage their emotions so that they can be as objective as possible. That allows them to view a situation for what it is, rather than to allow their anger or excitement or some other emotion to dictate their reaction. NE-II-177 21A

    43. Training Breathing Emotion Solutions NE-II-177 22

    44. Most of us here haven’t had that kind of in-depth training. However, simply being aware of the need to step away from our emotional responses can help us react more effectively when a situation involves conflict. One trick is to pay attention to your breathing for a few moments. When we are under stress, we often take rapid, shallow breaths. A few slow, deep breaths can refresh your brain with oxygen and help you focus more clearly. If anger or frustration or some other emotion is clouding your ability to see an issue as objectively as possible, it’s possibly wise to step back for a minute or an hour or even a day or more. Allow time to collect yourself before going forward. Remember the parenting trick of counting to 10 before reacting to a child’s confrontational actions? The same principal holds true when you are engaged in difficult interactions with teenagers or adults. Training Breathing Emotion Solutions NE-II-177 22A

    45. Questions for Conflict Resolution 1) What do you want? 2) What are you doing to get it? 3) Is it working? 4) Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 23

    46. Questions for Conflict Resolution Work on issues in the present and the future, not in the past. Rather than looking for blame and recrimination, steer conversations toward seeking solutions. Any time you feel that you aren’t making progress or that you don’t know what to do next, return to the four basic questions. 1) What do you want? 2) What are you doing to get it? 3) Is it working? 4) Do you want to figure out another way? NE-II-177 23A

    47. Negotiating Limits and Rules Are you law-abiding? Set limits that are clear & stick to them NE-II-177 24

    48. Negotiating Limits and Rules • Are you law-abiding? (Most people will say yes) • If a meeting is set to start at 8 am, do you arrive at 8:05? Is that OK? • When the freeway speed limit says 55 mph, do you drive 60? If so, why? Are you still law-abiding? NE-II-177 24A

    49. Scenario #1 Testing NE-II-177 25

    50. Scenario #1 Here’s a situation many of you probably experienced firsthand. The parents of a sixteen-year-old son set his Saturday night curfew at midnight. The first week he comes in at 12:05. Is that ok? The parents trust him and they are so glad that he is home safe they accept the late arrival and say nothing about it. The next Saturday, he comes in at 12:15. The parents relieved that he is home safe, and so they say nothing again. The next week, he comes in at 12:30, and the parents freak out. They give him their very best lecture about trust and responsibility. The boy’s eyes glaze over as he listens. NE-II-177 25A