As this series of blog entries continue to analyze what homeowners, board members and managers can do to constructively handle conflict in HOAs; we have already stressed the importance of folks understanding what is at the heart of a conflict and the importance of really listening to what the other individual is saying. However, the importance of using good interpersonal skills does not stop there.
Tip #3: Folks in a Conflict Must Strive to Use Neutral Language and Tone
Okay, so let us admit that at one time or another we have all said things in the heat of the moment that we later regret. We may have been trying to win an advantage during a verbal battle or maybe we just wanted to hurt or belittle the other person. As we look back on those moments, most introspective and emotionally healthy folks are not proud of those actions. However, it’s okay to forgive ourselves, move on and pledge to do better in the future.
Unfortunately, for some folks, HOA-related conflict brings out of the worst in them and they will say things that are not only inappropriate but also off the charts. So when we are in the midst of an HOA-related dispute, let us all pledge to do the following:
● I will not raise my voice and yell at the other person;
● I will not use profanity in my communications;
● I will not resort to name calling;
● I will not make assumptions on the motivations of the other person; and
● I will not use exaggerations about what happened.
While the pledges seem to be rules of etiquette our parents taught us at a young age, they are worth remembering in an effort to constructively work through conflict and bring more harmony into our communities.
Stay tuned for more tips on constructively managing conflict in HOAs!