From Conflict to Courage: How to Stop Avoiding and Start Leading

  • 3h 20m
  • Marlene Chism
  • Berrett-Koehler Publishers
  • 2022

Unresolved conflict is workplace kryptonite. Learn how to develop the mindset and skills to defuse disagreements, overcome division, and turn conflict into an opportunity for growth. Unresolved workplace conflict wastes time, increases stress, and negatively affects business outcomes. But conflict isn't the problem, mismanagement is.

Leaders unintentionally mismanage conflict when they fall into patterns of what Marlene Chism calls “the Three As:” aggression, avoidance, and appeasing. “These coping mechanisms are ways human beings avoid the emotions that come with conflict, but in the end it's all avoidance,” says Chism. In this book she shows how to fearlessly deal with conflict head-on by expanding your conflict capacity .

Conflict capacity is a combination of three elements. The foundation is the Inner Game—the leader's self-awareness, values, discernment, and emotional integrity. The Outer Game is the skills, tools, and communication techniques built on that foundation. Finally, there's Culture—the visible and invisible structures around you that can encourage or discourage conflict. Chism offers exercises, examples, and expert guidance on developing all three elements. Leaders will discover techniques to increase leadership clarity, identify obstacles, and reduce resistance. They'll develop powerful skills for dealing with high-conflict people and for initiating, engaging in, and staying with difficult conversations.

Readers will learn that when they see conflict as a teacher, courageously face it, and continually work on transforming themselves, they can get the resolution they are seeking. They can change minds.

About the Author

Marlene Chism is founder and CEO of Marlene Chism Consulting, a company designed to help people build drama-free workplace cultures that drive growth and reduce costly mistakes. Chism is an advanced practitioner in narrative coaching, and her expertise includes leadership development, conflict management, strategic communication, and more. As a seasoned professional speaker, Chism offers a transformational message of personal responsibility and alignment that is making its way around the globe at leadership academies, corporate retreats, association conferences, and customized webinars. She is the author of three books, including Stop Workplace Drama and No-Drama Leadership.

In this Book

  • Preface
  • Introduction—Conflict Is Not the Problem
  • Conflict Capacity—Comfort Is Not a Requirement
  • Identity—The Price of Being Too Nice
  • Leadership Clarity—Staying the Course
  • Emotional Integrity—Anger Is Not the Truth
  • Environmental Impact—Structure Determines Behavior
  • Resistance Training—Working with High-Conflict People
  • Skills—A Blueprint for Difficult Conversations
  • Responsibility—The Recognition of Choice
  • Conclusion—It’s Worth It
  • From Conflict to Courage—Study Guide and Book Club Facilitation
  • Notes
  • Bibliography


Rating 5.0 of 1 users Rating 5.0 of 1 users (1)
Rating 5.0 of 5 users Rating 5.0 of 5 users (5)
Rating 4.5 of 6 users Rating 4.5 of 6 users (6)