Conflict Resolution / Behavior Management Notes - New

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1 Conflict Resolution / Behavior Management Notes - New I have found that one of the major stressors for mentoring ministry staff is dealing with conflict and behavioral issues. Mentoring is all about developing a trusting relationship. Dealing with conflict and working through issues is part of building a relationship. It is imperative that coaches and mentors deal with conflict and behavior issues in a healthy manner. Unresolved issues will destroy trust, and it will only be a matter of time before the mentoring match is terminated. Dealing with conflict and behavioral issues in a healthy manner will increase the quality and longevity of your mentoring matches. Learning Objectives Participants will learn: 1. Why there tends to be conflict and behavioral issues in mentoring relationships. 2. Common conflict and behavioral issues and how to deal with them. 3. How to reduce and prevent conflict and behavioral issues from occurring within mentoring relationships My experience as a coach Many people do not like dealing with conflict or behavioral issues. Slide - Problems = Opportunities for Ministry I remember my 1 st year as a mentoring coach getting discouraged because of all the conflict and behavioral issues I was facing within my matches. I was talking to my pastor about it and he gave me some valuable advice. He told me to see these Problems as Opportunities for Ministry. He said that often God is at work in these situations and working through them in a healthy manner can bring health and positive change. I have often seen God use conflict to draw people to Himself. *The Coach sets the example for all other parties involved Try to bring a healthy resolve to conflicts. From a Biblical stand point it is important to live with clear relationships Matt. 5:23 & 24 Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the alter and there you remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the alter. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gifts. As a mentoring ministry, you are in the business of starting and fostering healthy relationships. So, whatever relational baggage you, the mentor, protégé, or parent brings into the relationship, chances are that you as the coach are going to get to deal with it. General Conflict Resolution / Behavior Management Truths Conflict will occur Most conflicts can be managed Conflict can help build relationships Conflict can be a motivator for change 1

2 You are the common denominator in every conflict you have It s not personal until you make it personal Myths Conflict is dysfunctional Conflict represents communication breakdown If avoided, conflict will eventually go away All conflicts can be resolved Conflict always results in a winner and a loser Slide The Ability to Successfully Resolve Conflict 2. The Ability to Successfully Resolve Conflict Depends on your Ability to: a. Manage stress quickly while remaining alert and calm. By staying calm and non- defensive, you can accurately read and interpret verbal and nonverbal communication. Psychologist Connie Lillas uses a driving analogy to describe the three most common ways people respond to being overwhelmed by stress: Foot on the gas An angry or agitated stress response. You re heated, keyed up, overly emotional, and unable to sit still. Foot on the brake A withdrawn or depressed stress response. You shut down, space out, and show very little energy or emotion Foot on both gas and brake A tense and frozen stress response. You freeze under pressure and can t do anything. You look paralyzed, but under the surface you re extremely agitated. (RAISE HAND)? - Have you experienced all three of these? What is you default response? b. Control your emotions and behavior. When you re in control of your emotions, you can communicate your needs without threatening, frightening, or punishing others. c. Pay attention to the feelings being expressed as well as the spoken words of others. d. Be aware of and respectful of differences. By avoiding disrespectful words and actions, you can resolve the problem faster. As it Relates to Mentoring Ministry Slide Conflict not Necessarily a Bad Thing 3. Why There Tends to be Conflict and Behavioral Issues Within Mentoring Relationships. a. You are dealing with a relationship between a mentor, protégé, parent, and coach. (Differences values, motivations, needs, perceptions, and ideas) b. You are working with kids They test the limits, as limits are pushed conflict c. Spiritual battle 2

3 d. Often working with at- risk youth Statistics show that you are going to have more issues to work through academics, abuse, teen pregnancy, anger, lack of attention & structure, e. Cultural and socio- economic differences f. Other issues Kids have anger from absent parent, parents not always healthy relationally, attachment disorder, ADDHD Slide - Ruby Payne Slide What category would most mentors fall into? Families? 4. Common Issues The coach often has to get involved to help address and bring resolve to these issues a. Communication between coach, mentor, or parent breaks down (Change in phone # or address, not return calls) b. Stability factors on the part of the mentor or parent can hinder the progress of the match and sometimes brings the match to an end (Job, emotional, spiritual, physical) c. Parent becomes jealous of match and tries to sabotage the match (Laundry list of bad things kid has done) d. Mentor, parent, or protégé doing things outside the parameters of the program (Parent grounding protégé, mentor giving $, watching siblings, overnight outings not approved) e. Protégé does not respond appropriately to mentor (testing, defiance, avoidance) f. New boyfriend or girlfriend of parent or disconnected parent get involved (Linda Werhan) g. Mentor or parent want to end the match because of unresolved issues (Mentor stood up protégé a couple of times, Parent continually grounds protégé from mentor because of bad behavior) 5. How to Deal with a Conflict Within a Mentoring Match a. Pray wisdom and to be calm and non- defensive b. Believe that it can be resolved and sell it to all the parties involved. c. Deal with the issue as soon as you can. I have found that the longer you wait to deal with conflict with in a match the more complicated it gets and the less likelihood of having a healthy resolve. d. Gain understanding, validate, empathize, normalize, and resolve. Role play Scenario - Mentor has been meeting with protégé for 3 months. They have done a lot of fun activities together and the protégé has never said Thank You to the mentor. Gain Understanding - Help me to understand this. You said you have done a lot of fun things with your protégé and some of the activities even cost you some money and your protégé has never thanked you? Is that accurate? Validate That is tough and frustrating. 3

4 Empathize One of my protégé s was like that. I really felt taken for granted. How does it make you feel? Normalize This may sound a bit weird, but this is actually a fairly common problem that quite a few mentors face. Have you talked to your protégé about this? What I have found with a lot of protégé s is that you often have to teach them to say thanks and show appreciation. This is a great life skill that will really help them in life. Would you pray about talking to your protégé about this? e. Talk to some one to get some counsel. f. If you need to pull all the parties involved together and work out an intervention. (Mark & Graves moving, James G. & Jesse stole $40) Louis had been matched with Domingo for about 8 months. During the first 8 months Domingo s family had moved 3 times and each time did not tell Louis or the coach that they were going to move or what their new address would be. Louis called his coach frustrated because he went to pick up Domingo and they had moved again without telling anyone. Louis said he was getting tired of tracking Domingo s family down. He said he had had it and wanted to quit. The coach agreed that having a family move frequently without notifying you is frustrating. The coach asked Louis to allow him to find the family and have a meeting with them before he gave up on the match. Louis said that was fair enough. The coach tracked the family down and set up a meeting with the mom, Louis, Domingo, and himself. The coach facilitated the meeting and expressed their concern about the family moving frequently and not notifying anyone. The coach said that the mentoring match could not continue like this and asked mom to communicate more and to give them a heads up if they were moving so they did not have to hunt them down. Mom said that Domingo enjoys meeting with Louis and that he has helped Domingo with lots of things. She said she would do a better job of letting them know about any future moves. The coach talked to Louis after the meeting and Louis said he would give it another shot. Mom did communicate better and the match went on for many years. Slide - Mediating a Conflict 6. How to Deal with the Behavioral Issues Within a Mentoring Match a. Working with kids and they will test limits b. Kids will go through a testing time with adults to see if they will set limits and boundaries and continue to be consistent and follow through with them. c. As a coach, you can help the mentor set appropriate boundaries from the beginning of the match and then help them manage them throughout the match. Basic Behavior Management Clear expectations Give a warning Give consequence / take away a privilege Stay calm 4

5 A mentor got some free tickets to a baseball game so he took his 8- year- old protégé to the game. As they parked the car the mentor told the protégé that he would give him $10 to spend on whatever snack he wanted, but that was all the money he could spend at this event. After 2 innings the protégé decided he wanted to get a hot dog and a drink, which cost $10. The mentor said are you sure that is what you want, because that is all you can get. The protégé said that was what he wanted. After the 5 th inning the protégé asked the mentor to get him some cotton candy. The mentor told the protégé that he already spent all the money for that event. The protégé started to throw a fit. The mentor told him that he needed to stop. If he continues he will have to take him home. The boy continued to throw a fit, so the mentor stayed calm and took him home. d. Kids that do not respond well to boundaries. A mentor is not a disciplinarian, but it can be helpful to take away privileges or fun activities if the protégé has bad behavior. 7. How to Reduce and Prevent Conflict and Behavioral Issues From Occurring a. Explain general expectations, guidelines, and boundaries at protégé and family interview. b. Train the mentors on how to set and manage appropriate boundaries. c. Help set proper expectations, guidelines, and boundaries at the match meeting (Give Examples from Making a Match) d. Provide ongoing supervision Help mentors prepare for possible challenges that they might encounter e. Provide resources for mentors that have protégés with potential challenges. f. Provide some additional training for the mentors (conflict resolution, ADDHD, setting and managing appropriate boundaries) Do what you can to work through issues to allow the match to continue long- term. Summary Questions 1. Why there tends to be conflict and behavioral issues in mentoring relationships. 2. Common conflict and behavioral issues and how to deal with them. 3. How to reduce and prevent conflict and behavioral issues from occurring within mentoring relationships. 5

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