Please sit with this TED talk.
We like it a lot. It connects with our interests in how conflict management – whether it involves a volatile patient in a healthcare setting, an agitated family member, a person about to be arrested by a law enforcement officer, or an international, geopolitical dispute – shares common elements, regardless of setting.
At the beginning of this TED Talk, William Ury shares a story in which a man leaves 17 camels to his 3 sons. It’s an amazing story which depicts the fine art of resolving conflict. See also the Vistelar blog post by Gary Klugiewicz in which Leigh Ann Maxwell shares this very same story of how an 18th camel is a bridge to resolution of conflict.
Please note William Ury’s comments at 5:12. Anyone ever heard that mentioned before? Hint…a guru in conflict management and verbal non/de-escalation :).
Note what he says at 7:54 about the power of story. This connects directly with the powerful role stories play in the Verbal Defense & Influence (VDI) program and our use of Peace Stories.
William Ury provides a useful model for how to manage and dissolve conflict. His book, The Third Side, is well worth exploring. It opens up whole new horizons for how the overall context and social setting, in which people in conflict find themselves, may be used to manage conflict.