Workplace Conflicts between Team Members Conflict between team members will happen in the workplace because the fact that there will have an environment where decisions are made and personality clashes will occur. This doesn’t mean you have an unproductive workforce, it means you will have to be able to catch the problem early and know what to do with each individual case. People are going to disagree because they have different view points, different backgrounds and a different thought process, maybe even a different agenda for that project.
People disagree for a number of reasons (De Bono, 1985). College graduates will be put into positions of uncertainty due to the lack of work history. This will in turn cause conflict, not knowing how to see it coming and not knowing how to handle it. Business classes have taken the next step and started to incorporate these conflict classes to ease the transition into the workforce. Having this knowledge before entering the workforce will better enable the student to fit into workplace teams with a shorter learning curve, this way being more productive in less time.
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Students have stated that more than 53% of conflict came from inefficient use of resources, and completing tasks in a particular sequence. The big issue is not being able to handle rules and procedures that seem unfair (Jen 1997). Having conflict between two groups, let’s say coming up with a new sales slogan would cause more brainstorming and eventually an answer to finding a slogan. In that case having a conflict would benefit the company. On the other hand personality conflicts are rarely productive and often lead to absenteeism.
The fortune 1000 category revealed 88% of companies used mediation in the last three years, a decade ago only a small percentage of companies used mediation. (D. Lipsky and R Seeber 1997). Bringing in third party conversations are helping in many ways, employees are more likely to open up with someone outside of the company than with the HR personnel which Workplace Conflicts 4 is recording all meetings. Having a third party conversation usually will bring in new or overlooked possibilities to solve or move the conflict in a positive direction.
Using a third party will introduce new scenarios that will promote new thought process and cause students to look at ways to stop conflict and see it coming. This helps in the way of making students know that conversation and rationalization will resolve conflict instead of negativity (Freedman & Adam, 1996). Several situations that cause conflict negatively and positively, here are a few: Ambiguous jurisdiction, unresolved prior conflicts, Differentiation in organization, Goal incompatibility and conflict of interest, (Filey (1975).
There are a great deal of positive outcomes from conflict, it can bring individuals and groups closer together, open new avenues of thought processes that might have been overlooked. Some companies will create conflict within a group or team to observe a managers ability to handle the situation. This is a good method of gauging whether he or she can see the conflict coming and turn it into a constructive learning experience so all team members are positive.
More managers are being put in these positions so they will know the right question to ask or be able to generate the correct situation to defuse the problem before it escalates into a non productive workforce. Teams also benefit from managers properly handling situations correctly, after awhile teams will pick up on downward spirals and turn the situations around. All people are different so, workplace conflicts with team members are going to happen whether positive or negative. How the team or manager is going to handle the situation is critical to the outcome.
Knowing the difference between what types of conflict you are having will give you a better path on how to handle it. Conflict is part of everyday life and it can be a positive tool if managed properly and not left alone to escalate into a negative situation. Students can learn to see situations coming and how to head them off with Workplace Conflicts 5 education and being able to communicate. Knowing the schools are teaching this helps companies be more productive when hiring new students. Having the resource of a third party is beneficial to the new employee and the company, allowing for open communication.