A Case Study of Conflict Management in a Public Organization
These Organizations around the world have reported conflicts among workers. Conflict is most frequently triggered by differences in personality, lack of specific job descriptions and responsibilities, incompatibility between employees and organization-wide challenges such as resource scarcity, job uncertainty and high levels of stress (Adebamowo 2006; Danna & Griffin 1999; Jameson 2003; Lemieux-Charles 1994).
Research has shown that interpersonal conflict the personnel negatively impacts stress, satisfaction at work, and effectiveness of teams (Cox 2003; Tabak & Koprak 2007). Absenteeism and high turnover are often the outcomes of workplace stress (Almost 2006; Clarke & Cooper 2004). Furthermore, collaboration among health-care providers appears to affect the quality of services provided and the implementation of quality-improving strategies (Krogstad et al. 2004).
Literature does not have a single definition of conflict. Most definitions agree that conflict is a process involving two or more individuals, in which one perceives resistance on the part of the other. Various factors contribute to the occurrence of conflict. (Vivar, 2005) A manager's conflict resolution style can be described as a five-step process: competition, collaboration, compromise, avoidance, and accommodation. In resolving a conflict, a variety of behaviors can be used, including cooperation and confrontation; in asserting one's position or finding an agreeable solution, assertion describes attempting to confront the other party and cooperation describes trying to arrive at a solution through cooperation.
The strategy of competition involves one party asserting their point of view at the expense of another. One party has the option of winning or losing. Relationships are often less important than personal goals. Cooperation deals with working together with the opposing party to reach a win-win solution that can satisfy both of the conflicting parties. Finding a mutually beneficial solution involves considering the interests of others as well as one's own. Conflicts are usually best managed through collaboration, since it aims to meet the needs of all parties. Finding a middle ground that considers both personal goals and interpersonal relationships is what defines compromise. Each party gains and losses from a compromise. A person who avoids a conflict does so by denying it, delaying it or ignoring it. In order to accommodate the other party, one must surrender one's needs or position in order to obtain theirs.
Keywords - Conflict, Conflict Management, Workplace Conflict, Conflict Strategies, Human Resources.