Part 1: The Five Conflict Types
Describe each of the five conflict types using paragraph form.
Conflict is important, and it is also important to recognize the different types of conflicts that you may be involved with. By knowing this, you can recognize the state of mind you’re in and if possible avoid it. Pseudo conflicts are one of the five different types. These are not real conflicts; they are only perceived as conflicts. Pseudo conflicts can result from two causes: faulty assumptions and false dilemmas. Mistaking assumptions for facts may explain many pseudo conflicts. Pseudo conflicts that result from false dilemmas occur when the parties involved see only two choices as solutions to the problem. Another is Fact conflicts; this kind of conflicts happen when individuals disagree about information that could easily be verified whether by statics or some other resource. Ego conflicts occur when a dispute centers on status or power; this reminds of two of my cousins when they let their egos get in the way of them winning their athletic competitions.
Even though it was obvious that Angel was more of an athletic guy than Joe, he always felt like he had something to prove. Instead of them continuing to be on the same time for these competitions, Joe felt as though he had to show Angel that he was able to do everything better than him as well as get the most girls phone numbers. This kind of ego conflict they had affected their ability to continue to work together. Value conflicts focus on personal beliefs that you hold near and dear and is one that is very important to me, because at a previous job another assistant manager decided that he wasn’t going to ask all the employees their availability on the weekends. He felt that it was okay for him to ask just the ones he had better communication with. I took that very personal because I believe that all of us should be treated equally no matter the title, status, who or what we know that conversation got quite heated, and the district manager got involved.
The last type of conflict is called Need conflicts this usually occurs when the needs of one individual are at odds with the needs of another; For example: when you need a tool to finish a job, and so does your co-worker, when you need time to complete a project for work, but your spouse needs you at that very moment, or when you need to schedule a meeting at two o’clock and your team member can’t be there until three, you have a conflict of needs. Sometimes need conflicts are easily resolved by redefining or restating the needs in a way that allows a mutual satisfying solution.
Part 2: The Five Conflict Management Styles
Describe each of the five conflict management styles and explain the strengths and weaknesses of each. Use paragraph form.
There are five different conflict management styles. Each of them has their own strengths and weaknesses. These styles are called avoiders, accommodators, forcers, compromisers and collaborators. Avoiders steer clear of conflict for a variety of reasons. If you are an avoider, you may lack the time, energy, confidence, or skills to engage in conflict. Avoiders try to stay away from conflict by leaving the situation, changing the subject, or simply agreeing to disagree without discussing the issues that precipitated the conflict. Although constant use of avoidance is not recommended, you may choose this style as a means of buying time in order to think through the problem, as a way of temporarily defusing strong emotions, or as a means of limiting your involvement in a conflict that does not seem worth the time or effort required to resolve it.
On the other hand, avoidance may keep you from seeking a long-term solution to the conflict. Accommodators allow others to determine the outcome of the conflict. You will “give in” to keep the peace. Accommodators value smooth relationships and don’t want to make waves or cause trouble for anyone. Accommodation may be most appropriate when the issue in conflict is not that important to you or when it is easy to make concessions to others. Repeated attempts to accommodate others, however, may result in resentment and failure to get your own needs met. Forcers expect to get their needs met regardless of the costs. For the forcer, winning may provide a sense of accomplishment. In conflicts, you may put your needs first and sometimes with little or no regard for the needs of others. This is a weakness when having to deal with a group of people. Not being empathetic to others causes relations to fail.
They frequently are more interested in implementing their solution to a problem rather than listening to the opinions, needs, and feelings of others. Forcers are often impatient with others who do not see things their way. Although forcing can lower morale, jeopardize relationships, and stifle creativity, in some situations, you might find this approach to be appropriate. Compromisers think that those involved in the conflict must each be prepared to give up something in order to reach a solution. Choosing the role of compromiser, you expect to settle for less than what would meet your needs. Compromisers usually employ maneuvering, negotiating, and trading in an attempt to find a solution. However, unmet needs may still remain, and for those involved, the commitment to the solution will be only lukewarm at best. Sometimes, however, you may choose to compromise because the compromise represents a solution both you and the other party can “live with.” This latter result is particularly acceptable when the nature of the disagreement isn’t of vital importance to you or the other party.
Lastly Collaborators believe that both parties can and will get their needs met. The underlying belief of collaborators is that if you understand one another’s needs, you will be able to find a way to meet both parties’ needs. The question is not whose needs will be met, but rather how you will meet the needs of both parties. This style has the advantages of promoting collaboration, creativity, and commitment. However, collaborating can seem unattainable to you when the needs of those involved are not clearly stated or understood. In addition, you will discover that collaboration takes time, and willingness of both parties to work together, and the belief that there is a mutual satisfying solution.
Part 3: Collaborative Communication
List two methods of collaborative communication and describe how using them can help you avoid conflicts.
• Believe both parties can meet their needs can help in avoiding conflicts. It is simply put that if I feel you can and you feel that I can and we both truly believe in each other, then there would be no conflict. In order for me to believe in anything, I will need some kind of proof first. By both parties believing in the other, they must have proven themselves once before.
• Wanting to hear the needs of the other is another method that can help avoid conflicts. We all think that what we say is correct so in most cases there is no need to hear the other. And when the other does try to intervene, a conflict occurs. If we take the time out to actually hear someone else without interruption, we may find out that their needs or opinions make lots of senses.