7

Background: there are four of us in my team, we all share the same office.

A couple of days ago, a heated argument broke out over a feature that was being implemented, between the three other team members, with shouting and (mild) insults.

As an external viewer, I could see that they were arguing over a dumb misunderstanding, and that everyone had their reasons, they just needed to calm down and decide what to do.

I however did not intervene, and as it was almost time for my usual break, I just walked through the door, took my cup of coffee and let them calm down before entering again.

Is what I did ok? Shoud I have said something?

  • 3
    Intervening in a fight with the thought of "it is a dumb misunderstanding" in your mind - even if it is a correct judgment of the situation - might make things much worse. I would only ever try to intervene if I am sure I can make the right move (neutrally, not making things worse). – skymningen May 5 '17 at 6:56
  • 1
    @skymningen I think it's very situational whether seeing the situation as "dumb" will help or hinder how you deal with it. If you're able to recognize that the argument is based on simple misunderstandings while arguing deeper points fruitlessly; pointing out where the two parties are misunderstanding each other may help calm the situation. That said, I absolutely agree that it might make things worse; and for that reason I would probably still avoid doing it (unless I knew their personalities well and that they would react positively, but that requires a close working relationship). – JMac May 5 '17 at 12:21
6

I think you did the right thing. Intervening could have solved the issue at that time, or it could have escalated and turned against you.

It is their task to behave themselves on the workfloor, as long as you are not the supervisor it is not your task / duty to intervene.

2

No, you did the right thing

Mostly this is not a fight about a feature, but a big problem between them, and the feature is just an excuse to settle this problem

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.