Manage conflict constructively:  Listen to learn

On the surface, it may appear counterintuitive to cultivate a work environment in which people are encouraged to respectfully voice conflicting points of view. Although research supports the value added by leveraging diverse points of view to fuel innovative problem solving, in practice this can lead to revealing conflicts of interests.

Whether we call it “healthy” conflict or “constructive” conflict, most people prefer to avoid conflict. A learning design approach rooted in listening to stories from different perspectives about complex problems can provide much needed support to help individuals make a mind shift from the natural tendency to suppress conflict to intentionally seeking to reveal conflicts of interests.

Manage conflict across organizations more constructively:  Learn through story listening

Learning and Development (L&D) professionals are rooted and grounded in every function within organizations and are essential to implementing and executing an ongoing strategy that supports a learning ecosystem designed to uncover, shine a light on, and expose conflict to manage it constructively (Thompson-Abell, 2017).

Embedding a learning through story listening strategy (McCann, Barto, & Goldman, 2019) within the learning design process enables us to produce more authentic multi-faceted learning experiences that engage participants because they can more clearly see themselves in scenario-based learning experiences (Moore, 2017).

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