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Learning to Forgive and Forget: Soft Skills for a Happy and Productive Team

Posted in Articles

Of all the workplace soft skills, none is more important to harmony than forgiveness. Your business simply cannot function when ongoing friction hinders performance. You would think that employees could simply move on after an argument. Although they do most of the time, sometimes it does not happen that way. Learning to forgive and forget is something you can encourage, even teach. Thankfully, Bookboon has the solution to overcoming friction in the office – no matter how long an argument has been going on. 


Arguments will happen

When a number of people with different personalities must interact, disagreements are a certainty. This is an unpleasant fact, more so in areas such as a workplace where people may not otherwise mix. Learning to get on with people outside of our comfort zone and social group is an important skill. Mostly, this will happen in the workplace. 99% of the time, employees settle their differences amicably. They could either:

  • Agree to disagree and never bring up the subject again
  • Discuss only work matters when interacting
  • The ideal situation is that they see each other’s point of view and gain new respect for each other

In the above scenarios, everything is fine. In some cases, they may also decide to avoid each other completely in future. Although not ideal, if their work does not overlap it may be the best option. One or both may eventually leave because of the unresolved conflict.

Do you want to lose your best employees?

No matter the cause of the friction, it is in your best interests to encourage a culture of “forgive and forget”. Friction is a major cause of low morale amongst all your employees. In the 21st century, morale and job satisfaction is the main motivation for people turning up for work every morning. Contrary to belief, it is not the salary.

The inability to forgive and forget does not affect only the people directly involved. It spills over, affects the morale of other employees, and sucks at your overall productivity. An office with high levels of friction is one that is not communicating. It is a negative workplace and one lacking in confidence and direction.

Tempers fray, emotions run high and an already stressful situation comes to a critical point. When these things set in, your best employees will leave. They need not even be part of the argument. Exposure to it is enough to make them consider whether they want to continue working for your business.

The importance of forgive and forget

Only through forgiving and forgetting can your employees develop personally. Only through this, can your business move forward. It doesn’t matter whether the friction is between two cleaners or between the CEO and one of his / her executives. Any broken link in a chain will weaken the whole. Forgiving and forgetting does not mean that one condones the behaviour that led to the falling out in the first place. It simply means an agreement to put it behind them and move on for the greater good.

Bookboon’s eLearning Solution

Bookboon’s elibrary provides a range of solutions to improve the soft skills amongst your employees. It is not just about teaching technical or advanced skills, but also those vital soft skills. Now more than ever, businesses are turning to electronic learning to help them plug the skills gap. The advantage of our elibrary is that your employees can work alone or in teams and learn new skills at their own pace. Elibraries are fast replacing classroom study for business skills as these methods take time and money. Bookboon’s elibrary is the cost and time effective method with an ever-expanding eBook range.

Test Bookboon’s eLibrary with this free demo.

Soft Skills

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