Unfortunately, conflict and construction go hand and hand. When you put together a large amount of people in a stressful setting with numerous deadlines and methods for accomplishing the same goal, you’re bound to have the occasional disagreement. While some conflict is good and accepted, it should still be watched closely. Conflict can boil over quickly and lead to physical altercations and, potentially, legal action. While your Fort Lauderdale construction attorney is always there to help you, it should never come to that.
General contractors are charged with the task of managing employees and subcontractors. Part of successful management is conflict resolution. In this two-part series, we provide tips for resolving conflicts on construction sites. For more tips, visit the second part of this series.
Remember Your Common Goal
When dealing with conflict on the jobsite, it’s important to get both sides to realize that there is one common goal and that’s to safely and successfully complete the project. That goal supersedes all others and, in essence, everyone belongs to the same team. Let both sides know that their opinions are valued, but the end goal is a completed project.
Get to the Heart of the Matter
One of the most important skills to have in conflict resolution is listening. You must understand the issues both sides say they have and what those issues truly mean. By listening to both sides, you will understand the context of their arguments and be better equipped to offer a solution. Oftentimes, the issue may not be as difficult to overcome as it initially appeared. The issue may be a misunderstanding that requires better communication.
Armed with information about the root causes of the conflict, you can work with both parties to create a solution to their collective problem. You must make sure that both sides are receptive to a solution and are willing to compromise. The key is for the conflicting parties to understand that they will not get everything they wanted, but the end solution will benefit them in some way.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.