What skills does a conflict resolution consultant need to have?

If a workplace experiences conflict and other problematic issues between employees, there may be a need to call for the services provided by consultants specialized in conflict.

After all, allowing those conflicts to continue unchecked may only cause them to grow and spread, affecting those previously unaffected by them.

However, before bringing in a specialist in conflict resolution, it is essential to be aware of the skills they possess to determine whether they would be a good match for the conflict you are dealing with at work.

What is a conflict resolution consultant?

A conflict resolution consultant is a specialized professional who meets with the parties that are having a dispute and helps them find a way to work through it. Ideally, the resolution should satisfy all parties involved in the conflict.

The types of disputes that a conflict resolution specialist can address can be varied, from personal to legal or professional.

What skills can a conflict resolution consultant use?

A trained conflict resolution specialist knows that the first thing they must do is identify the problem and the parties involved. Once they have this information, they must understand what resolution each party is looking to achieve and how much each one is willing to compromise to resolve the problem.

Other skills that a conflict resolution consultant must have include the following:

Knowing how to conduct an impartial investigation

A skilled conflict resolution professional will not rely on the opinions of the parties involved but will take the time to investigate their claims. They will review relevant documents and speak to witnesses to establish the motives behind the conflict.

Negotiating and counseling

Once they acquire the necessary background information, the specialist will meet with the conflicting parties to listen to what they say while being ready to offer potential resolutions. They will spend time with each party to negotiate terms that will be beneficial to both until the parties are satisfied with the solution that has been recommended.

Additional skills

To be truly helpful in the resolution of existing conflicts, the expert will not only know how to understand their client’s needs and help them improve their communication, but they will also bring to the table added skills such as:

  • Emotional understanding
  • Patience
  • Active listening
  • Impartiality
  • Effective communication strategies
  • Attention to detail
  • Willingness to help reach a satisfactory end to the conflict

Where do conflict resolution specialists usually work?

Their work is generally useful in office environments, but they are able to translate their skills to many industries. They may work in their own offices or their client’s location. Some industries where their skills are particularly useful are:

  • Government agencies
  • Corporate headquarters
  • Hospitals
  • Clinics
  • Law offices
  • Courthouses

They may also call the parties in conflict to meet in a neutral place, such as a public meeting place or in their clients’ homes.