Video Length: 77 minutes
Many of us fear and avoid conflict, but conflict can actually strengthen relationships, increase creativity and lead to top-notch solutions. This revolutionary session shows how to turn disagreements, trash talk and bickering into doorways for collaboration and teamwork. You'll learn to recognize different conflict "styles” and know when it’s appropriate to use them, and you’ll get 10 tips and tools for effective conflict resolution. By approaching discord in ways that lead to a positive outcome, you will help create a healthy relationship to conflict within your organization. This is a presentation from the 2015 Best Friends National Conference.
Karen is the executive director of the Cat Adoption Team (CAT), the largest feline-only shelter in the Pacific Northwest. Karen started her career in animal welfare at Best Friends Animal Society. During 10 years at Best Friends, Karen’s roles included managing the Animal Help office and serving as assistant director of the national No More Homeless Pets program. In 2006, Karen relocated to Portland, Oregon, where she worked for seven years as the senior director of the Alliance for Contraception in Cats & Dogs. Having worked with hundreds of animal welfare advocates and organizations, Karen witnessed how often unhealthy organizational cultures, ineffective communication and destructive conflict interfered with efforts to save animals. Determined to bring skills and knowledge to this challenge, Karen completed a degree in organizational communication and a Certificate in Conflict Resolution and Mediation in 2009. In early 2012, Karen became the executive director of Cat Adoption Team. CAT finds homes for 2,500 cats and kittens each year and provides 1,500 spay/neuter surgeries for cats with low-income owners. CAT is a founding partner of the Animal Shelter Alliance of Portland (ASAP), which has doubled the live release rate of cats in the Portland metro area to over 91 percent.