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Handling conflict is essential to your career no matter the industry you are in. It is especially vital if you want to enter the music or film industry where you need to juggle different personalities and characters. To finish a project, you need to ensure that everyone collaborates and that the finished piece is the vision that you wanted. If you’re going to strengthen this skill, this is where you can start.

Understand Both Sides Of The Coin

Even if you don’t necessarily agree with the other person, you still need to respect their thoughts and opinions. If you don’t agree with them, try to understand their perspective. Don’t feel that you need to bend on your side of the argument, but at least try to compromise. You have to choose the battles you want to win and the ones you are willing to let go.

Understand that you never get what you deserve; you get what you negotiate. Pick the battles you want to win, and live to fight another day. For example, if you are arguing on three different fronts, pick which two you don’t need to win and take them as a loss. Choose the one that is vital to gain and ensure you get it. When you do this, you will walk away with what you need to continue the project.

Understand that when you have a conflict with another person, they want something out of the disagreement and appeal to that side of them. If during the conversation they can only focus on one point or aspect of the problem then start there. If they are bringing up that point often, that means they are interested in that, and you can use that information to your advantage.  Appeal to them by compromising on the point they care about.

It’s The Business, Not You

Don’t forget that conflict is inevitable for any job. When you have healthy conflict in the business that means you have people who are invested in the work they are doing, and want to see it get better. Most importantly, don’t take what they say about your opinion personally. Nothing is a personal attack; instead, think of it as a conversation around making the project better. You want to ensure that the conflict is productive to the project and business. In these situations, aim for a win-win situation. When you look for a beneficial compromise, you show the other side that you are invested in a mutual win and they will be more open to suggestions.

As a producer, you have to remember that you are working with people from different backgrounds and perspectives. No two people think alike, remember that when you have your first disagreement. In those situations, you need to be ready to negotiate and appeal to the other party’s interest. Don’t have tunnel vision of how something will turn out. Be flexible and willing to adjust on the go. If you want to be successful you need to ensure that you are able to roll with the punches.