My Philosophy


Corporations, governments, and other organizations are missing the creative potential offered by conflict engagement.

With 15 years experience developing and teaching methodologies that effectively address conflict, I will work with you to respond effectively to an acute conflict or develop a program for building conflict competencies.

The best response to an acute dispute is usually one or a unique combination of mediation, facilitation, coaching, and training that is sensitive to your particular situation.

To build competency in conflict requires that an organization develop a conflict conscious culture. This means acceptance of the inevitability of conflict coupled with attitudes and methodologies that address it effectively.

Conflict engagement is paradoxical. The ideal is to gain the benefit of constructive conflict engagement and avoid the negative consequences of destructive engagement. There is a tendency to avoid conflict altogether, and miss out on potential benefits. It may be necessary to be in the conflict to get the most out of it. The best steps forward often arise from being fully conscious in the core differences without escalating negative communication.

On teams, members must work through conflicts to sustain dynamic working relationships. Furthermore, constructive conflict builds connectivity as well as creativity, and enhances the quality of decision-making.

You have heard of the expression ‘the elephant in the room’ which refers to a relevant interpersonal dynamic that no one is talking about. Conflict competence entails learning ways of inviting others into difficult conversations about unaddressed dynamics (unacknowledged elephants). An organization and the individuals in it move forward by becoming conscious of what was previously not noticed or addressed, and as a result, shifting towards more effective behaviours.

Some of the causes of conflict are embedded in existence and will not go away. Unavoidable conflicts can be used to enhance the productivity of an organization. But, there are also avoidable conflicts that damage relationships and contribute to inefficiency. These may arise from lack of capability of individuals involved, lack of organizational alignment, role confusion, lack of training, leadership deficiencies or other possibilities, all of which can be worked on and improved.

If you are spending more time thinking about relationship friction and conflict in your organization than the work you are supposed to be doing, that’s costing you money. Please contact me by filling in this form:


2 Responses to My Philosophy

  1. Brian says:

    “Some of the causes of conflict are embedded in existence and will not go away. ” Amen to that! I love your philosophy of learning to ride the conflict tiger rather than trying to shoot it or run away from it.

    • Gordon White says:

      Hi Brian,
      I am catching up the comments on my blog. Thank you for taking the time to make your remark. In my experience, one of the greatest impediments to addressing conflict effectively is avoidance, which takes many forms. Escalation is one of the least acknowledged forms of avoidance. Many people attack rather actually be with the difference and examine it.
      Thanks again,

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