Conflict Resolution Greetings
Starting the Interaction with Non-Escalation
Conflict Resolution Greetings are how we achieve non-escalation by shaping the initial contact with the other person carefully and sensitively.
Hi, it’s Gerard O’Dea here, and I’m continuing today with our series about communicating under pressure. Today we’re talking about the universal greeting, which is concept number four on our communicating under pressure methodology.
It’s an unfortunate fact about human beings that we make snap judgments about others. We get an initial impression about a situation or a person and that directs how we respond to what happens next. When you’re at work and you need to speak to somebody, client, customer, resident, the patient or whomever, then it’s really important that you create a safe and supportive atmosphere from the very beginning.
We call that a non-escalation strategy. Our goal will be to improve communication flow by establishing trust with the person. By going beyond their natural hesitation to comply or collaborate or cooperate with us through our tone and facial gestures and encouraging them to feel safe. And there appear to be some reflexive questions that people immediately ask themselves when a person in authority or somebody who works for a company appears in front of them and intrudes on their day. Instinctively, people will want to know who you are, what authority do you have to be standing in front of them, why you’ve come to speak to them, and then what’s going to happen next.
So the formula is simple. Give them an appropriate greeting, identify yourself and your role or your authority, tell them why you’ve come to speak to them and give them some information about the purpose of your interaction. And lastly, make an appropriate and reasonable request of them.
What that does is it makes sure that you start off your interaction in the best way possible and that if it goes badly from that point on, it won’t be because you miss the crucial element of creating a safe and supportive atmosphere.
Remember, these days we have to consider that we may be on camera being watched or listened at any time, and so that’s what we call our universal greeting, answering the key questions in the interaction at the very beginning to engender the best start. For more information, visit vistelar.com or go to dynamis.training to see about our courses in the U.K.
Gerard O’Dea is a conflict management, personal safety and physical interventions training consultant. He is the training director for Dynamis, a specialist in personal safety and violence reduction initiatives and the European Adviser for ‘Verbal Defense and Influence’, a global programme which addresses the spectrum of human conflict. www.dynamis.training