Eversheds survey finds HR staff face more workplace conflict than in any other profession

Human resources practitioners experience more workplace conflict than any other profession, research has revealed.


Law firm Eversheds surveyed 1,000 employees to discover the extent that workers clash with their colleagues.


More than half of the HR professionals surveyed said they experienced conflict at least once a week at work, perhaps reflecting the nature of HR’s role as workplace troubleshooter.


But staff in other professions are also clashing, with one in 10 workers in the retail, food and leisure industries admitting to locking horns with workmates every day.


Respondents identified the top three causes of conflict as: specific individuals who thrive on causing trouble people with their own agenda and underperforming colleagues.


Martin Warren, head of employment law at Eversheds, said: “There is a fine line between healthy debate and a more heated situation, which can be counter-productive and result in divisive tensions within the workforce.”


The survey found 40% of workers were not comfort­able challenging their colleagues for fear of it ending in conflict. The survey also found workers shied away from situations that could lead to conflict with the boss or their direct reports.

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