Conflict Resolution Techniques Essay
While conflicts are inevitable in any workplace, how they are handled determines their effects on an organization. To guide in conflict resolution, there are five major conflict resolution skills that should be considered. Depending on the nature of the conflict, parties involved should choose the best method to establish peace and reconciliation. The five major conflict resolution skills widely used today include avoiding, competing, accommodating, collaborating, and compromising.
The avoiding technique involves withdrawing from a conflict or ignoring the fact that it exists. Conflicting parties choose this method when the reward of resolution is less than the discomfort caused by confrontation (Lacity & Willcocks, 2017). Avoiding is beneficial to the facilitator but may not be worth it as people may be withholding important ideas that could add value to the conversation. However, it can be quite an effective tool when either of the parties involved require a cool-down period. One of the major benefits of this technique is that it gives the parties involved time to calm down and possibly consider other perspectives that may be important in solving the conflict (Jit, Sharma & Kawatra, 2016). However, caution should be observed not to use avoidance excessively as it may make conflicts worse.
Competing as a technique used in conflict resolution involves a lack of consideration of other people’s viewpoints and using all means possible to win. The method is premised on the assumption that one must win irrespective of the loss suffered by the other party. As such, this technique does not permit different perspectives into the resolution process (Jit et al, 2016 Conflict Resolution Techniques Essay). Competing is best suited for sports or similar zero-sum games but may not be the best when he intention is to solve problems within a group. The advantage is that the style solves disputes quickly as there is no room for disagreements or discussions.
The third technique is the accommodating skill, which simply entail putting the other party’s concern before your own and letting them get their way. According to Gilin, Leiter and LeBlanc (2015), the technique is applicable in scenarios where one party does not care about the issues discussed compared to the other party. It is also used when one feels like he/she is in the wrong or if prolonging the conflict is not worth the outcome. As such, the technique works best when one party’ goal is to maintain the peace at the expense of winning. While one may seem weak, accommodating is essential as it allows one to move on to more important issues. Nevertheless, as much as small issues may be handled easily, accommodating will not work in important or larger issues.
The fourth skill is collaborating which involves listening to the other party’s perceptions, discussing an agreement goal, and ensuring an understanding among all parties. Collaborating technique requires a lot of consideration and great courage. Notably, for collaboration to work, both parties should be assertive and cooperative (Gilin et al, 2015). The main aim is to have a shared solution that each party is willing to support. The parties thus sit down and negotiate the conflict in a bid to establish a win-win situation that leaves everyone satisfied. Due to the attempt to ensure that each party is satisfied, collaborating may take a lot of time compared to other conflict resolution strategies. However, the technique is beneficial as it leaves everyone satisfied and maintains harmony.
The final technique is compromising, which seeks to find resolution by conceding due to the failure to agree on some concepts of the solution. Considerations and courage are required as parties try to look for common ground (Jit et al, 2016). Sometimes, compromising can lead to a lose-lose situation as parties give up on some things to focus on larger issues. The strategy is usually used to save time or when a solution is just required whether perfect or not. The benefit is that both parties are accommodated and can actually set the stage for collaboration in the future. However, the fact that none of the parties leaves he table completely happy makes this technique largely un-attractive.
References for Conflict Resolution Techniques Essay
Gilin, O. D., Leiter, M. P., & LeBlanc, D. E. (2015). Individual and organizational factors promoting successful responses to workplace conflict. Canadian Psychology/psychologie canadienne, 56(3), 301. https://doi.org/10.1037/cap0000032
Lacity, M. & Willcocks, L. (2017). Conflict resolution in business services outsourcing relationships. The Journal of Strategic Information Systems, 26(2), 80-100. S0963868717300094–. doi:10.1016/j.jsis.2017.02.003
Jit, R., Sharma, C. S., & Kawatra, M. (2016). Servant leadership and conflict resolution: A qualitative study. International Journal of Conflict Management, 27(4), 591-612. https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/IJCMA-12-2015-0086/full/html