What should you do with difficult emotions?

As a leader you want to model the way, to set an example for people who report to you. In conflict, this means responding to challenging interactions, with both strength and compassion. This means you need an emotional foundation to stand on. We’ve found the following perspective from a leader in the field of conflict, Bernie Mayer, helpful. He talks about a student commenting to his martial arts Master, “I don’t know how you can always stay in balance.” The Master replies, “You are

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Wake Up and Smell the Power

Power is one of those words that carries a lot of baggage. Some of us think we have no power in a situation and others might think we have all the power. It’s been our experience as mediators, with the opportunity to talk with multiple parties in a dispute, that often times each party thinks the other party has more power. That’s a sobering insight into the nature of power. In interpersonal relations, power can be understood as the capacity to influence others. Authority

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What are you going to do?

As a leader, you are often faced with difficult decisions. You may be thinking about it all the time or not know what to do at all. It could be a stressful conversation you’ve been avoiding or an operational decision that’s been keeping you up at night. Here is a powerful exercise to help you get to a better understanding of where you stand and assist you to find your motivation to act. Think of a course of action you’re considering. Grab a piece

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Avoid This Trap in a Difficult Conversation

We’d like to continue to offer a few key tips from our How to Have Difficult Conversations Course. Now, we’d like to shine a light on a sand trap you want to avoid falling into, once you find the mojo to start the conversation. One leader we know fell into this sand trap. He was stuck in a loop of seeing his employee as someone who was an under-performer, not following his directions and probably out to get him. For example, he would notice

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What’s Holding You Back?

As we stated in the first blog, we are now going to share a few tips from our How to Have Difficult Conversations self-directed online course.   These tips are foundational concepts underlying our step by step How to Have Difficult Conversations model. The first tip has to do with when you find yourself getting upset. We don’t know about you, but for us, we find ourselves wanting to push the other person away. We can so easily go into our reptilian personality and

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Welcome to the OCLI

Welcome to the On Conflict Leadership Institute (OCLI) blog! We are pleased to be your guides and hosts. We are Julia Menard and Gordon White, the Principals and Founders of the On Conflict Leadership Institute and two mediators who have been in practice for decades. Our intention with this blog is to unleash the inherent creativity in conflict, through helping create more conflict competent cultures. We want to offer you tips, tricks and learnings on how to move through difficult conversations and empower others

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