Conflict resolution


08Sep 2013

Do You Communicate in Morse Code, FM radio waves or HDTV?

The fact that people have different communication styles in not news. However, I have found a “word picture” that seems to really help individuals get a better sense of how different they are from others, and also gives a clearer understanding on the challenges they have in communicating effectively with those close to them. There is a wide range in

06Jun 2013

Why Cynicism is Good for Your Workplace

This may seem to be a bit of an “about face” for me – given my previous writing on how cynicism is a result of “bad recognition” or when employees question the authenticity of appreciation communicated. But it occurred to me that, really, cynicism can be a positive influence in our workplaces. How? When people are cynical, they are giving

22Mar 2013

Why “Everybody Just Get Along” Isn’t a Good Long-term Strategy for a Healthy Family

In working with family-owned businesses for several years now, I’ve seen one pattern of relating that consistently doesn’t work over the long term.  In many families there is a mantra that dictates the family members’ behavior, and that can carry over to the business as well.  It is: “Now let’s all just get along.”  While the “just get along” message

22Jul 2010

From Morse Code to 3D Movies: What Kind of Communicator Are You?

Recently, I was working with a husband and wife who also own and run a business together. One of the issues that came up was their differences in communicating, and how this creates challenges in their relationship (both personally and as co-managers). I used a “word picture” that helped illustrate the difficulties they are experiencing in communicating with one another.

07Mar 2010

Creative Problem-Solving: Ways to Communicate When the Other Person Just Doesn't "Get It"

My wife (Kathy) and I have been married 30 years. We are both college-educated and fairly good communicators. Most people understand us when we talk or write. But sometimes we have a hard time communicating with each other. It is not that we don’t try, or that one of us doesn’t want to understand. But occasionally (I think it is

09Feb 2010

Trust and Business Relationships — Some Common Pitfalls

Recently, in a variety of settings I am observing the issue of trust impacting business relationships. Obviously, trust is at the foundation for business transactions — that the vendor will provide the goods or services purchased, that the goods or services will be at the quality level described initially, and that the customer will pay for the goods or services

02Sep 2009

Keys to a Long Term Relationship — Reflecting on 30 Years of Marriage

This week my wife and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary.  Neither she nor I can believe we have been married that long — part of it is that we just don’t feel that “old”! (To keep the edge of reality a bit less sharp, we usually comment that we were only 12 when we got married.) But as we

20Oct 2008

Learning from the Best: Musings from a Successful Top CEO

This weekend I had the opportunity to speak at a conference for major donors of a charitable organization. It was a beautiful setting in Southern California, and my wife accompanied me, which was a treat. The other keynote presenter was Carlos Sepulveda, who is the CEO of Interstate Batteries, and a dynamic presenter. In addition to his presentation, Mr. Sepulveda

14Jul 2008

How to Create Problems in Your Life: Avoid Conflict

I have observed a common pattern across many areas that I work (and live) — people avoiding dealing with tense or conflictual situations in their relationships with others. And almost always, not dealing with the situation creates additional problems or makes the conflict larger and more intense (often involving more people than were originally involved). And it happens in lots of

08Jun 2008

The Foundation of Healthy Family Relationships: Consistent Time and Communication

Much of life is not magic or spectacular. As one of my friends says, “Life is daily.” And when we look at the goals so many of us have — to be healthy physically— in shape and not overweight; to be moving toward financial independence; to have healthy family relationships — in our marriage, with our children, and among our

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