Mitigating Small Conflicts

Small conflict is small conflict, it is easy to foresee the future of resolution or at least it is easy knowing that this issue will most likely not amount to a big deal. The problem is the anxiety that comes with it. People who are struck with an anxiety problem find it hard to process the next steps when enduring a small altercation or less. Small conflicts are indeed small conflicts, but they potentially leave a stain and when anxiety takes place, it is hard to think about how you are going to mitigate this issue. 

The first step always feels the most difficult, but if the issue passes, understand that the anxiety, the restlessness and concern builds. This can lead to a major communication and workplace disconnect. This can even lead to a breakdown, but let’s not get that far. Instead, let HRMatrix alleviate your worries and guide you to a more comfortable sensibility in order to mitigate conflict. 

You will have to gauge the conflict firstly. Is it a miscommunication issue, an altercation, have you and a colleague met differences in which you cannot find a resolution. Of course the tension begets tension, so even the following week may feel.. Awkward to say the least. 

The way you should approach the issue is to not make it personal unless it is a directly personal issue. Strip away emotions and accusations so the opposing opinions can stand down, allowing the other person to comply. This will allow your colleague to make sense of the resolve instead of fighting against it, and helps put the both of you on neutral ground. 

Anxiety is a huge barrier during conflict, and HRMatrix wants you to know that we understand this major dilemma and are not alone. Building confidence is key, because conflict resolution insists on communication. Of course being the first to confront an issue is daunting, but that’s the hardest step! Bringing a small conflict into light does not have to be a big deal at all. 

Try these lines:

  • “Hey, I understand yesterday we had an issue, but I wanted to communicate so we can resolve it together.”

  • “I think the altercation at hand was due to misunderstanding. Would you be open to talking about it?”

  • “I think you didn’t understand what I meant and maybe I didn’t understand you. Can we talk about it”


Be confident! It’s hard to summon the energy to resolve an issue directly, but it is wise to. It is better to confront the issue then to let it exist and linger throughout the workplace. Conflicts put a weight on your shoulders, but it’s not manageable. Treat everyone with a professional standard, and always ensure you meet those expectations too.