Leadpoint’s #1 goal, as a recycling industry staffing partner to the MRFs we support, is to provide a high-performance work team that improves the productivity, efficiency and profitability of the business. Our embedded employees and onsite managers work with you to create solutions and reduce chaos in your MRF.
One area we help our recycling customers manage is conflict resolution. While infrequent, conflicts are unavoidable anytime a team of employees work together. How Leadpoint’s onsite managers work with you and your team to handle these instances is critical for our mutual success.
We recommend viewing conflict as an opportunity rather than an obstacle. Our onsite managers are experts at using proven tactics for fair, productive conflict resolution that advance teamwork. Here is our advice on five ways to turn clashes into harmony.
While some might view workplace conflict as a negative, it can also be an opportunity for growth and connection. Conflicts can help your MRF break through counterproductive thinking and stimulate creative new ways of working.
In addition, when handled properly, conflicts can help people understand one another and improve working relationships. It helps to find common ground and to reinforce that everyone cares about the same thing: the success of the operation and safety of its people.
It’s critical to not ignore conflicts or attempt to sweep them under the rug. Not only could this foster resentment and hard feelings, it limits the opportunity to use the underlying issues as fuel for growth.
Instead, seek out sources of the conflict and intervene before it escalates. Our onsite managers are trained to do the hard work of helping the parties to a conflict resolve tensions openly and respectfully, without feeling like they have to take sides.
When conflicts arise, managers must take the time to understand all points of view – and those involved in the conflict should do the same. All sides need a chance for their voices to be heard. This approach communicates that peoples’ opinions are valued, establishes mutual respect and facilitates a productive resolution.
In any conflict situation, it’s vital to stay calm and focused on the big picture to prevent long-term anger and resentment from building.
Assignining blame is unnecessary and counterprodutive. Keep the emphasis the specifics. Work toward compromise and plans for avoiding future issues.
In any confict, it’s important to involve the participants in both surfacing the underlying reasons or circumstances that created the conflict and in arriving at a resolution. This approach demonstrates that it’s ok to express your opinion at work and that diverse points of view are valued.
Those who are part of the debate often have the most creative ideas. And, allowing all parties to arrive at a solution together builds teamwork and motivation to avoid future issues. Even in cases where discipline is required, engaging everyone in the discussion helps them understand how they can improve and avoid collisions in the future.
For more on handling and resolving workplace conflict at your MRF, or to learn about our recycling industry staffing approach and the expertise of our onsite managers, contact Leadpoint today.