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Durham University

Human Resources & Organisational Development

Emotionally Intelligent Leadership


Unproductive conflict in the workplace is expensive and can seriously lower productivity and the quality of services that we give to our colleagues, students and the other people we deal with. Conflict can also have a harmful impact on team culture, which in turn will track through to the quality of work we do. By causing unhelpful stress, conflict can also have a harmful effect on our health.

This programme is designed to enable participants to develop an understanding of conflict and how they react to conflict situations. The programme also allows participants to explore strategies that can be adopted to resolve conflict situations.


By the end of the workshop participants will have:

  • Identified own key issues in dealing with workplace conflict.
  • Understood why conflict situations arise in organisations
  • Learnt and understood what is “positive” and what “negative” conflict is.
  • Learnt strategies to help deal with ‘difficult’ people in difficult situations
  • Learnt models, tools and techniques for effectively resolving conflict situations
  • Learnt some key communication techniques.
  • Documented an action plan to use the ideas from the course in their role and identified opportunities to apply the learning.


  • Reasons for conflict arising in the workplace.
  • Types of conflict and types of actions that cause conflict.
  • Exploring what is “positive conflict” and what is “negative conflict”.
  • Strategies and structures for preventing conflict in the workplace: planning, prevention & resolution.
  • Looking at the role of team and organisational culture in managing conflict
  • Overall strategies for resolving conflict in the workplace
  • Managing conflict within yourself and others.
  • A range of effective and flexible communication techniques
  • Continuously linking the work we do to the “big picture”- the strategic aims of the University and the environment in which it operates. For example the economic pressures that most Institutions are now feeling together with the high cost of conflict in the workplace makes a problem solving approach to conflict management not only desirable but also makes economic sense.


  • Participants will gain greater understanding of conflict and strategies to deal with difficult situations
  • Have a range of tools, techniques and models for conflict management and resolution
  • Programme provides highly practical and effective communication techniques which can be used in all aspects of everyday and professional life.


This will be a combination of:

  • Inputs on the models used
  • Individual work
  • Paired and small group work
  • Group discussion and problem solving
  • Practice with tutor feedback
  • Overall the session will be practical and highly interactive- there will be an emphasis on helping participants to process and apply the ideas and data and to use these to start solving their real life issues

Who is the course suitable for?

This workshop would be suitable for any member of staff involved or potentially involved in managing conflict of any type.

Which of the ‘Realising Your Potential Approach’ Behaviours are supported by this course

This workshop will generally help indirectly with most of the Realising Your Potential Behaviours but specifically connects to:

Developing myself and others

  • by developing participants’ interpersonal skills in preventing conflict, managing unhealthy conflict, using conflict positively and helping colleagues to develop these skills

Working Together

  • by helping participants to use conflict management as a key skill in building effective teams and effective working relationships


Full Day Seminar – Lunch Provided