Conflict resolution really does resolve conflicts.  After attending and presenting at the New England Chapter of the Conflict Resolution Association, I learned how so many companies are incorporating conflict resolution into their culture. 

In today’s environment of Yelp and Facebook, bad reviews can truly hurt a business and when your first line does not understand how to negotiate, then the customer will deal with the issue in their own way—online. 

It can be very expensive to fix an online reputation.  What to do instead?  Commit to conflict resolution.  Here are some tips:

1.      1. Be trained in collaborative negotiation.  You and your staff can benefit from this training- not only using it in person, but on the phone and via email too.   My friend had an issue with a restaurant in Florida.  She was treated rudely via email! So much so that she escalated the issue to report the manager. There was no need for this, and it could have been avoided with proper training.

2.     2. Know that there are forms of conflict resolution out there.  I read so many contracts that have a default of litigation or a judge versus jury decision.  Before going to court, think about mediation where you get an opportunity to make the decision.  I had a client who was convinced she was heading to court over a broken partnership, but I convinced them to try mediation.  It led to a satisfactory, quicker and less costly decision.

True North Business Consulting provides negotiation training and mediation.  For more information contact us today!

Cynthia Pasciuto is an attorney, consultant, mediator and educator in Massachusetts who has taught at Bentley University, NIWH and NESA.