KRA Prepares Students for Potential Workplace Conflicts

Like all KRA Career Agents, Nevaughan Moulds knows that merely having technical employability skills is not enough for workplace success. She knows that KRA Portsmouth YES (Youth Employability and Success) participants entering the job market also need behavioral skills to deal with disputes that arise in the workplace…conflict resolution skills that are critical to sustainable employment. To this end, she works diligently to equip YES students with the skills and techniques they need to avoid and/or resolve workplace conflicts effectively. Mrs. Moulds talks with them about the power of words and how “they can be an esteem builder or breaker and are often misunderstood or taken out of context.” Also, she stresses “that it’s not always what you say, but how you say it.” Mrs. Moulds uses commonplace events, that students face every day, to illustrate how even minor disagreements all too often can lead to verbal and/or physical confrontations…behaviors that will not be tolerated in the workplace. The students begin to realize that how they handle personal conflicts now might be a predictor of how they will handle workplace disputes later. Using carefully crafted discussion points, individual and group Q&A exercises, and “what if” scenarios, she elicits from them how they would deal with potentially adversarial situations. Mrs. Moulds says “my goal is to help students understand that they can minimize the chances of disputes by the way they conduct themselves, and that the techniques they are learning here can be used in various personal and professional settings and situations. Even simple amenities like ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ go a long way to show co-workers courtesy and respect.”