Cover image for Listening to conflict : finding constructive solutions to workplace disputes
Listening to conflict : finding constructive solutions to workplace disputes
Van Slyke, Erik J.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : AMACOM, [1999]

Physical Description:
xiii, 210 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
HD42 .V36 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Covering the area of conflict in the workplace, this text seeks to show that the best way to solve such problems is not through persuading, arguing, or trying to win, but by practicing and perfecting the art of listening. The book supplies probing insights and step-by-step guidelines on how to develop effective listening skills, and arrive at constructive resolutions. The listening process is covered in full, and includes information on how to develop self-awareness, change the action/reaction cycle that leads us to impasses, and understand how listening fits into the collaborative resolution process.

Author Notes

Erik J. Van Slyke is a principal with HR Alliance, a human resources consulting and training firm based in Greensboro, North Carolina. Heis a frequent speaker at management conferences around the world.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

We listen with only 25 percent efficiency, according to human resources consultant Van Slyke, and this listening inefficiency is the root of much unresolved conflict. He details a process for constructive dispute resolution, beginning with the suggestion that we get to know ourselves first, a step he sees as critical. Then follow Four Principles of Interaction; Six Levels of Listening; Four Steps to the Highest Level, Empathetic Listening; Three Obstacles to Effective Listening; and Six Steps of Collaboration. The presentation is highly organized, if a little dry. According to Van Slyke, empathic listeners hear both explicit and implicit messages, taking in not only words but also body language, intentions, and feelings. When they couple that level of understanding with their own self-awareness, they are ready for constructive conflict resolution, a process that Van Slyke calls supportive communication. Buried in all those lists are helpful suggestions for effective listening, and it is hard to dispute the importance of learning to listen at work and in life. Recommended for larger public and business libraries.Julie Denny, Alliance for Mediation & Conflict Resolution, Amenia, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
1. Understanding Conflictp. 1
Definition of Conflictp. 5
Factors Affecting Conflictp. 14
Conclusionsp. 31
2. Listening to Ourselvesp. 33
Developing Self-Awarenessp. 34
Identifying Your Interpersonal Zonesp. 42
Conclusionsp. 64
3. Principles of Interactionp. 65
Discipline, Desire, and Patiencep. 70
Detached Responsibilityp. 73
Acceptancep. 79
Mutual Gainp. 86
Conclusionsp. 95
4. Listening to Othersp. 96
Listening Definedp. 98
Learning to Communicatep. 101
The Six Levels of Listeningp. 104
The Role of Empathyp. 109
Obstacles to Effective Listeningp. 113
How to Listenp. 119
Conclusionsp. 128
5. Resolving Conflictp. 129
The Framework for Conflict Resolutionp. 130
The Six Steps of Collaborationp. 139
Choosing an Approachp. 160
6. Collaboration Appliedp. 162
Find an Alternative Solutionp. 163
Third-Party Interventionp. 166
Challenges to Listening to Conflictp. 169
7. Cultures of Constructive Conflictp. 184
The Impact on Conflict Managementp. 188
Organization Requirementsp. 189
The Effects of Trainingp. 193
Constructive Conflict Training Requirementsp. 194
Conclusionsp. 198
Referencesp. 201
Indexp. 207