Reducing Differences At Work Place

What makes some people so easy to relate to and others a pain in the neck? The conflict in a relationship, we reason, occurs when the weight is on the differences rather than the similarities.

Reducing difference is essential when dealing with people you can’t stand. Successful communication depends on finding common ground, and then trying to redirect the interaction toward a new outcome.

Here are some ways which may help bridge differences between you and your colleagues.

Use of Communication Skills

If logically approached, using communication skills can help eradicate the problem permanently.

Blending refers to reducing the differences between yourself and other person. Redirecting is any behavior by which you use a growing rapport to change the trajectory of your interactions. These skills are not new. They are part of normal human contact. In fact, you already use them, to some extent.

Blending In

You blend with people in many ways. Visually, you may blend by altering your facial expression, degree of animation, and body posture to match the other person. Verbally, blending occurs when you try to match the volume and speed of your counterpart’s speech. And you blend conceptually with your words. When people feel like you’ve listened to them and you understand them, it's because of blending. It’s normal to blend with people whom you like or with people with whom you share an objective. Conversely, it’s equally normal ‘not to blend’ with people whom you perceive as difficult.

But the failure to blend has serious consequences, because without blending, the differences between you become the basis for conflict.


Human relations have no middle ground; no one cooperates with anyone who seems to be against him or her. Subconsciously or otherwise, people want to know, “Are you with me?” You come across as either hot or cold in the relationship – perceived as being on common ground or as worlds apart.
Reduce the differences

Reduce differences between yourself and other person by blending or modifying your facial expression, your gestures, your posture, the volume and speed of your speech, and your words.

Blend before you redirect

Only after establishing some rapport with a difficult person through blending will you be able to redirect the interaction, and change the trajectory toward a worthwhile outcome. In dealing with a particularly difficult person, try to recall instances in which you have successfully blended with or redirected this person in the past, and try to imagine circumstances in which you might do so again.

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