Conflict Resolution

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Executive Summary

To prepare questions and answers for

The Understanding Conflict Resolution Workbook

This paper has been prepared for Laura Kavanagh
Lecturer of Psychology
By Jai Acharya

Course title Understanding Conflict Resolution.

Dated 13.3.2013

Q1. What do you understand by the term conflict?

Defined by the oxford dictionary conflict is a term , which is to be in a state of opposition Or a clashing of opposed interests.
The notes in the conflict resolution workbook it states” conflict is a difference in opinion between two or more persons or groups that causes each to influence a situation affecting all parties concerned .

Q2. Describe reasons for conflict and what happens if the conflict is left unresolved.

Conflict often occurs when two or more parties cannot negotiate on a certain practice for example in the workplace you have employee A which is fast working employee whereas employee B works at a more reduced pace as employee A finishes their work faster they enjoy the comfort of extra breaks or even be given time to go home earlier. Employee A will argue that employee B is receiving preferential treatment and therefore conflict would arise.

If this conflict demonstrated above remains unresolved resentment, communication breakdown or in the worst case scenario abusive behaviour could occur not to mention low morale amongst the other employees which would have a dramatic effect on productivity and customer relations. As the underlying infrastructure namely the workforce, the back bone of the company would be at odds with each other.

Q3. Based on the example in Q2 we will identify 3 ways in which the conflict could have been dealt with.

We will use a mediator for the next three examples.
Q3 (1) Take both parties to a neutral setting and come to some sort of compromise employee A obviously has a faster turnout than employee B in a situation like this time frames could be observed and adhered to. Q3 (2) To take both parties and the supervising person/s and agree a pattern of equal breaks without preferential treatment for faster productivity. Q3 (3) To observe what both parties concerned want the outcome to be for example employee A could take the incentive and say they could help the other employees in cases when they had finished before the others while employee B could offer to step up productivity.

Exercise 2

Q1. What are the different communication styles that people use in a conflict situation and what is the impact of those styles. Compare the effect of the various communication styles in a conflict situation? In answer to the above question there are no “normal or “correct” style of communication, rather they vary between people of different places and cultures, it would also be fair to say communication styles vary amongst family members and people of the same gender.

As we live and work in ever increasing communities with diversities, people from different backgrounds and countries will no doubt have different communication styles that may be different from our own. It is therefore important to clear up any misunderstandings and misinterpretations early on and be open to the different styles of communication.

In a journal by M.R Hammer (2005) it claims that peoples conflict lie along two continuums the first is how we voice our disagreements (do we give others clues about our views and describe them with stories and metaphors?) this is described as an indirect style of communication. While at the opposite end of the continuum is the direct style in which the speaker bluntly explains exactly what they disagree about.

Hammer also describes the expressiveness continuum in which people are very extroverted and expressive with their emotions. The four main types of communication styles come under the following; Discussion style.

In which the persons keep their emotions controlled, but they are accurate and clear about their disagreements, they...
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