Overview

As individuals, we can be creative and ambitious in both our personal and professional lives. But individual efforts can't always match the energy and productivity of a group. Cultures, societies, clubs, schools, and militaries arose out of our need to band together for mutual support. Organizations were created to deal more effectively with the environment - both the natural world and the world of work. But there is a trade-off when we move from individual contributions to group efforts: the relationships necessary for working together can spawn conflict. Both worlds create a landscape where conflict flourishes, but a conflict with your boss doesn't necessarily spell the end of your career with an organization. There are steps you can take to gain perspective on and to manage the conflict so that it focuses your energy and your boss's energy on the needs of the organization, moving both of you toward a more productive working relationship.

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