ways to effectively manage conflict on ... conflict across projects. use expertise 2 judiciously if
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WAYS TO EFFECTIVELY
ON PROJECT TEAMS
1 BE A SUBJECT EXPERT
Without an understanding of current trends,
technology, and work processes, it is
difficult to win the confidence of the team
and to build the credibility needed to
manage conflict across projects.
2USE EXPERTISE JUDICIOUSLYIf flaunted, expertise can be intimidating and demotivating to the team.
It biases solutions toward the project managers ideas, which in turn weakens any team buy-in.
PLAN PROJECTS EFFECTIVELY3
Effective planning early in the project life cycle is important to minimize confusion and ambiguity that might lead to conflict later during the project execution phase.
4CATCH CONFLICT EARLY
Good project managers know when conflict is under control and being handled by the team and when some early intervention is necessary.
Tools for intervention include regular gate reviews, an open-door policy, action teams, and focus groups.
5 AVOID THE QUICK SOLUTION TRAPA quick agreement on fixing a major problem should be looked at with suspicion.
To avoid this trap, project managers should follow up on agreements with an email or second meeting to iron out details and make sure that the issues have been addressed.
The initial objective of most conflict resolution is to reach consensus, not necessarily unanimity, on how to proceed.
This requires common ground found through mutual respect for everyones ideas, opinions, and suggestions.
6FACILITATE COLLABORATION AND CONSENSUS
7 THE ART OF LISTENING
Active listening includes questions of clarification to understand the arguments of the opposing party.
It is an important catalyst for fostering an environment open to discussing issues and searching for solutions.
USE JUDGMENT BEFORE RESORTING TO FORCING
While appropriate and effective in certain situations, forcing and withdrawing can have adverse effects if used inappropriately, especially when dealing with conflict across functional lines.
Less autocratic, more team-centered manage-ment styles that provide space for autonomy and self-direction foster an environment of lower conflict, both in intensity and frequency.
9 FINE-TUNE YOUR LEADERSHIP STYLE
CREATE A PROFESSIONALLY STIMULATING WORKPLACE 10A professionally exciting, vibrant envi-ronment is a strong catalyst for conflict self-management.
Project managers should try to accommo-date the professional interests and desires of supporting personnel when negotiating their tasks whenever possible.
Wiley is a registered trademark of John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Adapted from Managing Technology-Based Projectsby Hans J. Thamhain
Business people conflict mast3r/ShutterstockLeader of the team cogal/iStockphotohttp://wileyactual.com/ProjectManagement/index.php/it-pm/it-main-sub/63-managing-technology-based-projects