When employee conflicts arise, it's important to act proactively, says Sheryl Kovach, president and CEO of Kandor Group, a human resources consulting firm in Houston. Employee conflicts often stem from miscommunication, and if a conflict is allowed to stew for too long, it could cause resentment and frustration, leading to a loss of productivity.

Proactively managing employee conflicts all starts with having an open-door policy, Kovach says. This encourages transparency and helps ensure employees understand what it expected of them, which is often an underlying cause of employee conflicts. Employee conflict can also arise when employees are fearful to address issues with management. An open-door policy, however, helps employees feel comfortable enough to address these issues before they become long-term problems.

"It's simply a matter of communicating expectations," Kovach says. "Without that communication, there is likely going to be continued conflict. Employees can also use that same approach when they interact with their peers, which reduces the likelihood of any problems."

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