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Getting to Resolution: Turning Conflict into Collaboration Paperback – November 2, 2009
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From Library Journal
"Spit happens," says Levine in this practical book on conflict resolution, and he proposes a structured, seven-step collaborative model for dealing with it. A self-styled "resolutionist," Levine has 25 years of experience dealing with conflict as a lawyer, mediator, consultant, and trainer. He suggests that disputes can be resolved by practicing ten basic principles ranging from an "assumption of abundance" (there is more than enough to go around in this conflict) to a state of being what he calls "responsAble" (looking to oneself rather than to outside professionals for solutions). While much of Levine's model depends on a healthy state of optimism ("Remember. The glass is half full"), his process has real application not only for third-party mediators but also for individuals in the middle of a dispute, and it can be self-administered. He makes the process accessible, neatly summarizing each chapter and sprinkling his presentation liberally with cogent quotes and useful examples. Recommended for all public libraries.?Julie Denny, Alliance for Mediation & Conflict Resolution, Inc., Amenia, NY
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“Getting to Resolution offers a unique and effective paradigm for understanding how you can use your natural gifts and interconnectedness to improve your interactions in all relationships.”
--Marvin E. Johnson, JD, Executive Director, Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution
“Getting to Resolution is a clear and practical guide to the secret of success — how to create and leverage collaborative advantage. It is a must read for leaders seeking to strengthen relationships and get positive results.”
--Diana Whitney, PhD, President, Corporation for Positive Change, and coauthor of The Power of Appreciative Inquiry, The Appreciative Inquiry Summit, and Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Revolution in Change
“It is impossible to read this book and not grow in understanding of conflict, resolution, and self. Every page offers wisdom and practical tools.”
--Arnie Herz, Esq.
“Stewart Levine has written a very practical book about one of life’s vexing problems — how to reach agreement with others when differences must be resolved. He does so with the intent of fostering collaboration and creativity as the outcome.”
--Alan Briskin, author of The Stirring of Soul in the Workplace and coauthor of The Power of Collective Wisdom
“This book is practical, mind-altering, and life-changing. It’s hard to achieve those in one book, but Getting to Resolution does that. It fills you with inner peace and the wisdom to untangle the thorniest conflict.”
--Noah Blumenthal, author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller Be the Hero
“If you want to resolve conflict and build relationships while connecting at a profound level, read Getting to Resolution. It gives you new language and practices for transforming your communication so you can lead at a higher level.”
--Victoria Halsey, PhD, Vice President of Applied Learning, The Ken Blanchard Companies, and coauthor of The Hamster Revolution and The Hamster Revolution for Meetings
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· Get in the right frame of mind. The first essential step to resolving conflict is to want to resolve it. Open up and be truthful. You must commit to and invest yourself in the process.
· Stop thinking of conflict as a win/lose proposition. Arguing over who's right often does not lead to a resolution that anyone wants. When you are committed to collaboration, you will disarm those who are committed to a fight. Focus on what the conflict is costing everyone and what everyone can gain from a resolution.
· Tell your story and listen to the story of the other side. Resolution arises from sharing information, while conflict arises from withholding it.
· Test out your preliminary vision about how the conflict can be resolved. As you get more information, check to make sure that your vision meets the concerns of all the parties involved.
· Get current and complete information on the issues. You must be up-to-date in order to move forward with a resolution.
· Reach an agreement in principle. Come to a broad understanding of what the resolution will be.
· Create a template for agreement including the following elements: Intent, specific vision, roles, commitments to action, timeline, measurements of satisfaction, concerns and fears, renegotiation, dissolution, consequences, dispute resolution, and management of the process.
I found it enjoyable to read what Levine says; he's a good writer. Beyond that, he is one of the few people who are truly original thinkers. His theoretical overview of conflict resolution makes sense [Part three explains the principles (his ideas) for resolving conflict.] Every theory is backed with facts or solid reasoning. For example, the gem in a footnote on page 249: "1. Collaboration is a key driver of overall performance of companies around the world. Its impact is twice as significant as a company's aggressiveness in pursuing new market opportunities (strategic orientation) and five times as significant as the external market environment (market turbulence). Collaboration can positively impact each of the gold standards of performance--profitability,profit growth, and sales growth--to determine a company's overall performance in the marketplace.[Citing a study sponsored by Verizon and Microsoft.]" Levine makes you think about the priorities for your time and why you should "get to resolution" with those around you - yes even with that SOB attorney for the other side.
But beyond theory, this book lays out practical "Steps 1,2,3..." that can be applied. For example, contract negotiators and contract writers would get better contracts if they would focus on what Levin puts forth in his chapter on "Crafting the New Agreement" as "The Ten Essential Elements."
From my experience by working with corporations in trouble, there is no doubt that a corporate manager (or someone aspiring to be one)would be more successful if they read Getting to Resolution. And, if you are an attorney (or working with them) Levine lays out a way to better legal results.
In short, this is an enthusiastic "Get the book!"