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Inspiring Action While In Conflict

Posted By Edwin Greenfield, March of Dimes Canada, February 9, 2016
Updated: February 9, 2016
 Two people in conflict

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes 

I think one of the least inspiring aspects of life can be conflict.  That’s not to say conflict is a bad thing, conflict can be good it can give us clarity, build relationships and can inspire action.  The issue is how we deal with conflict.  The key to all conflict resolution is effective communication, and our problem-solving skills.  Our brains and bodies are wired for conflict to survive but as humans we are also wired to problem solve and collaborate. 

Conflict resolution methods are being used more and more at every level of society – in the schoolyard, in workplaces, court proceedings and global confrontations.  A growing number of schools and community groups have incorporated conflict resolution/violence prevention programs into their curriculum.

In my workshops by developing self-awareness and communication skills, we can work on the challenge and growth in conflict.  Participants learn a facilitative approach to conflict resolution. These workshops help people better understand where conflict comes from and form a solution to bring the parties together to resolve the conflict using 6 simple steps.


6 steps to solving a conflict or an argument;


  1. Identify the Problem - You have to agree to what the problem is

  2. Focus - On the problem not the person

  3. Listen - With an open mind and without interrupting

  4. Respect - Treat the person’s feelings with respect

  5. Take responsibility - For what you say and do

  6. Ask Questions - For example: “how do you see this?”



Resolving conflict isn’t an easy process, if there is a stale mate ask for a break and reconvene later when tempers have cooled, if necessary ask for help either from a colleague, supervisor or professional mediator. 


March of Dimes Mediation services offer Volunteer Toronto subscribers a significant discount. For information on assistance with conflict resolution, mediation, arbitration or training for your staff I can be reached at 415-425-3465 extension 7725 or via email

 Edwin GreenfieldFor the past 25 years Edwin Greenfield has worked at March of Dimes Canada in various management roles in Toronto and across Eastern Ontario and has been engaged in the study of Alternative Dispute Resolution since 2007. Edwin has actively managed workplace conflicts in health care including disputes between colleagues, managers and employees and within teams with a specialty in disability and elder mediation.

As a highly effective mediator Edwin brings unique insight in dealing with conflict as a Social Worker combining his conflict resolution problem solving skills with his understanding of individuals and interpersonal dynamics.

Edwin earned a Social Work Diploma and holds an Executive Certificate in Conflict Management from the University of Windsor’s Faculty of Law. He is a member of the ADR Institute of Ontario, the ADR Institute of Canada, the Toronto and Area Chapter of the Ontario Mandatory Mediation Program and the Ontario Community Care Access Centers. 

Tags:  conflict in the workplace  Conflict Resolution  how to resolve conflict  intra office issues  non-profit staff conflict 

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