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Effects of conflict on productivity Essay

List of Figures and Tables
Study population – Table 3.1


Response rate -Table 4.1


Causes of Conflict – Table 4.2


Causes of Conflict – Pie Chart 4.1


Effects of Conflict – Table 4.3


Effects of Conflict – Pie Chart – 4.2



Chapter One
1.1 Introduction
Lucgeor Enterprises was registered in 1998 as a general merchant business but specialized in supplyof printed and general stationery amongst others. Since its registration , Lucgeor has never looked back and have dominated the supply of stationery to most of the businesses in Mombasa and surrounding towns.

The company has 43 members of staff who have the necessary skills and commitment to the ideals of the organization in all respect. The management of Lucgeor Enterprises are people of long standing experience in the Printing and stationery business. They have instilled good team work and participatory management of the organization which has seen the organization take a lead in the stationery supply business.

The company aims to gain a huge market share through various approaches including cost leadership , service differentiation and focused attention aimed at persuading their customers and potential clents i

of their quality service provision and pocket friendly prices. The company makes good use of ICT to reach its clients thus saving on time and costs.
Lucgeor Enterprises which is based at Bondeni area along Abdel Nasser Street, has for the last twoand half years been going through some conflicts between and amongst its staff. The conflicts have in away slowed or derailed the smooth operations of the company and more importantly affected its service delivery to key clients who have had to wait for hours or days for goods to be delivered. This tr end is unlike in the past when service provision took precedence over all else. 1.2 PROBLEM STATEMENT

The company has had strained relations amongst its workforce lately which hampers its service deliv ery
activities. The complaints registered with management regarding poor service delivery to customer s are becoming the norm rather than the exception. If the trend is not arrested in good time, the impact of the conflicts within the organization may end up destroying the company and with it the livelihood of a good number of employees and even the owners.

(i) To establish the causes of conflict at Lucgeor Enterprises (ii) Effects of conflicts at Lucgeor Enterprises and
(iii) To seek for appropriate solutions to the conflicts.
1.4 Research Questions
(I) What are the causes of conflict at Lucgeor Enterprises?
(ii) What are the effects of conflict at Lucgeor Enterprises and? (iii) Which are the most appropriate solutions to the conflicts? 1.5 JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY
(i) To the Researcher
The study would give the researcher a first hand experience on what causes conflicts, conflict situ ations,
effects of conflicts on organizational productivity, teams and team work and hopefully enable the researcher to find best conflict management approaches which could help organizations in conflict t o

overcome such conflict situations in their organizations in the best way possible . 1

recommendations given as anecdotes to the conflict situations in the organization thus unlocking the potentials of the business to serve its customers effectively by managing the conflicts sensitively .

(iii) To other Researchers
The study would give future researchers ready information for reference purposes and to enable them fill the gaps that may be noted and hopefully improve the conflict prevention , containment , avoid ance and management activities in organizations thus enhancing positive industrial relations in organizations, besides increasing the body of knowledge available for consultation and experimentation. (iv) To Mount Kenya University

Future researchers would utilize the findings of this study for reference purposes and the foundation upon which they may further their research on conflicts, based on available findings , conclusions and recommendations thus filling the gaps that may be noted and hopefully improve the conflict prevent , containment , avoidance and management activities in organizations thus enhancing positive indus relations in organizations.

Effects of Conflict on Organizational productivity study, was an attempt to understand the effects of conflict amongst employees of an organization on their productivity and the overall productivity of the organization in achieving its objectives.. The study was conducted amongst the employees of Lucgeor Enterprises at their place of work at Bondeni area and it took approximately 6 months. 1.7 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY

(a) Lack of Time
The researcher due to time constraints was faced with serious juggling between the research work ti me and the daily work related responsibilities, all of which required a piece of his time. Fortunatelythe researcher was able to work through and ensured that none was given a raw deal and the project completed in time.

(b) Limited Information
The researcher due to the nature of organizational policies and communication strategy, received l mited i
information on the basis that the providers i.e the staff, never fully trusted the intentions of the researcher. But to authenticate the information provided, the researcher went the extra mile to independently v erify

the same with the top management who were more than willing to clarify provided information and eve tied the loose ends thus affording the researcher a clear picture of the inf rmation required for the o

research work.
(c) Reluctance by employees to respond
The researcher faced the prospects of failure by the staff to respond to interviews, answer questio nnaires.

The employees reluctance to respond, our investigations found were due to fear of victimization by management for divulging company information to outsiders whose intentions were not clear to them. To circumvent this, the researcher consulted the management who gave unequivocal assurance to the staff that they will not be victimized since the researcher was a student whose details they had authenticated and was simply doing research as part of their course work. the assurance saved theday and enabled them to respond positively given the requirements of the project.


Chapter Two
Conflict is a common denominator to all social life. It is an inevitable part of our lives becauseit is related to situations of scarce resources, division of functions, power relations and role differeniation. t

Because of its pervasive and ambagious nature, conflicts have led scholars and administrators to qu estion

whether they understand its meaning and relevance and how best to cope with conflict should one arise. The normative conception of conflict, strongly influenced by a preoccupation with stability and equilibrium in organizational design, links conflict to violence, destruction, inefficiency and irrationality This form of intellectual myopia was especially invidious in suggesting that administrators have th e

responsibility of avoiding, controlling or eliminating conflicts. Descriptive approaches challenge the whole basis and rationale of these assumptions. They permit usto depart from an outmoded paradigm by suggesting that any social interaction in which the parties (however they may be structured or defined) compete for scarce resources or values have the potenti l for a

conflict. Using the term in broad sense , we suggest that conflict refers to all kinds of antagonis tic interactions. More specifically, it can be defined as a situation in which two or more partie have s incompatible objectives and in which their perceptions and behaviour are commensurate with the incompatibility. This definition is purposely broad. It suggests that conflict is a social phenomenon that is found in personal, group or organizational interactions.

Conflict therefore has several dimensions.
Fink 5 distinguishes between
(I) Antagonistic- psychological relations and
(ii) Antagonistic behaviour
Likewise Pondy 6 observes that conflict is made up of (I)Antecedent conditions (ii) Affective conditions
(iii) Cognitive conditions and
(iv) Behavioural conditions
We therefore advance a conception which emphasizes its three, interrelated dimensions, namely (1)Conflict situation (the basic incompatibility)
(2) Conflict attitudes (Range of psychological factors) and
(3) Conflict behaviour (set of related behaviour)
Conflict refers to more than just overt behaviour. Concentrating only upon its behavioural manifestation is an extremely limiting exercise. The three dimensional conceptions of conflict emphasizes the ne d to e

consider the situation in which parties (Individuals, groups or organizations ) come to possess incompatible goals, their structure of interaction and the nature of their goals. We have to consid er emotional (e.g distrust) and Cognitive ( e.g Stereotyping) orientations that accompany a conflict situation as well as a range of action undertaken by any party in a situation of conflict. 2.2 Theoritical Review / Conceptual Framework

Stephen Robbins makes a strong case for the need for a more realistic approach to conflict with his “Interactionist Approach”. He states that there are three basic managerial attitudes toward conflicwhich t he identifies as traditional behavioural and interactionist. The traditionalist, following our so cial teaching believes that all conflicts are destructive and management’s role is to get them out of th e organization. The traditionalist, therefore, believes conflict should be eliminated. Thebehaviouralist seeks to rationalize the existence of conflict and accurately perceives conflict as inevitable inomplex c organizations or relationships. Thus the behaviouralist “accepts” it . The Interactionist views conlict as f absolutely necessary, encourages opposition, defines management of conflict to include stimulationas well as resolution and considers the management of conflict as a major responsibility of all administrators.


The interactionist view is accepted and encourages conflict. Avoiding a disagreement doesn’t make t go i
away. We need to be aware of conflict and make decisions about what we are going to do about it. Conflicts only become negative when it is not approached and resolved. Lack of communication amongst group members can lead to avoidance of conflict. When that happens, the group can lose its effectiveness. group members and leaders need to to be able to resolve conflict successfully. Likeany other leadership skills, conflict management can be learnt.

Conflict Management
Conflict is inevitable in any interpersonal relationship or among members of any group. Whereas we meet various types of conflicts in our lives, we are at a lose as to what to do when one arises. Ma ny people tend to leave conflict situations e.g if one breaks out in a group. Why do we shy away from dealing with conflict? . It is because we were raised to believe t hat conflict is something to beavoided, an experience of failure. However conflict does not have to lead to failure, or even to the termin ation of relationship. we all come to see and experience the world in a different way, and we all have different ideas about what is best for “my group” or “our group”. Recognizing this fact can help free us from the negative conclusion that conflict is a signal of failure.

Styles of Conflict Management
(a) Competing – An individual pursues his or her own concerns at the expense of the other person. This is a power oriented mode. Competing may even mean standing up for your rights, defending a positio n which you believe correct, or simply trying to win.

(b) Accommodating – The opposite of competing When accommodating, an individual neglects his or her own concerns to satisfy the concerns of the other person. there is an element of self sacrifice this in

mode. Accommodating might take the form of selfless generosity or charity, obeying another person’s order when one would prefer not to, or yielding to another person’s point of view. (c) Avoiding- The individual does not immediately pursue his or her own concerns or those of the other person. He or she does not address the conflict Avoiding may take form of diplomatic sidestepping of the issue, postponing an issue until a better time or simply withdrawing from a threatening situation. (d) Compromising – The objective is to find some expedient, mutually acceptable solution which partially satisfies b parties. . Falls in the middle of Competing and accommodating. oth

(e) Collaborating- The opposite of avoiding . Collaborating involves attempt to work with the other person to find some solution which fully satisfies the concerns of both persons. Initiation

The most effective way to confront conflict situation is to state the tangible effect a conflict ha on you. s
(f) Active Listening – Negotiators must be capable of hearing the other person’spoint of view . . while listening, do not think about how to reply in order to persuade . . argument – provoking replies should be avoided.

. Active listening involves paraphrasing or restating what the other says. Idea or . Content should be considered as well as feelings.
(g) Problem solving
. Clarify the problem – After the above steps, each party should have a clear idea about what is the tangible issue.
. Talk about what is needed or wanted ( be clear on facts and information). . Generate a list of possible solutions.
Nations, organizations and groups are made up of individual human beings. Each person has through experience developed a set of values and evolved a set of behavioural rules. These values and rulesare sufficiently alike in a given society to allow justice, morals and ethics to exist and create gener l a

agreement about what is right and what is wrong. But the value-rule set for each individual is a unique set not fully shared by other humans..These differences in value-rule sets are most likely the basi c

causes of conflict.

Another major cause of conflict is the motivation of the separate individuals. Each person is motiv ated by a unique degree of satisfaction in a set of needs. It is quite likely that in a given situation the individual concerned will be aiming their personal efforts at slightly different objectives. Such objectives may be similar enough to permit cooperative effort but sufficiently different to createsome conflict. A common example is the “hot line “ employed by many commanders as a means of staying in touch with the troops. This opportunity to short circuit supervisory channels often antagonizes intermediate managers, who may learn of a problem only when the commander confronts them with it.. Then, too, it may be possible for all to be motivated to behave toward the same goal accomplishment but to feel that the goal, when attained, will not be great enough for all to share adequately in the reward. Conflict may then occur as each person strives to attain their place in the sun. EFFECTS OF CONFLICTS

Conflicts have both positive and negative effects. It can be positive when it encourages creativity, new looks at old conditions, the clarification of points of view, and the development of human capabilities to handle interpersonal differences. All of us have experienced a surge of creativity when we perm the it

ideas of others to trigger our imagination, as for example in a brainstorming session. Conflicts can be negative when it creates resistance to change, establishes turmoil in organization or interpersonal relations fosters distrust, builds a feeling of defeat or widens the chasm of misunderstanding. . Unfortunately the term “conflict” has only the connotation of “bad” for many people, so much that they think principally in terms of suppression, giving little or no attention to its more positive side.

Conflicts occur when the needs and goals of the individual are not in harmony with the objectives a nd goals of the organization. Chris Argyris, in his discussion of man versus the organization, indic ates the high likelihood of the traditional goals and structures of organizations may be in conflict with the needs and goals of the personalities in the organization. This may
be reflected in the efficient and omni potent

bureaucracy that places emphasis on hierarchy, specialization of work, established norms of conduct , and explicit rules, often forgetting or overlooking the individual and his unique qualities. Traditionally, personal values tend to be hostile toward organizations, big government, big business, bureaucracy, and the military.

Again, conflict can arise when interdependency exists. Employees become dependent on the organization to give their lives direction and meaning. Such dependency allows them to escape the burdens of personal responsibility. whereas we praise individualism in workers, the organization often require that s

the individual be treated impersonally. Efficiency requirements in organizations also acts as a sou of rce
conflict because they regularly demand that the goals and needs of the organization be given higher priority than the rights of individual. We therefore yield to the proposition that conflict between organizations and personal values is normal and a fact of life.

Managing the inherent conflict between individual needs and organizational need demands a high degree of self awareness on the part of the manager. What am I willing to do in balancing of these needs? How much can I accommodate of the needs of other human beings in the organization and still serve the greater good of the company?

One major influence on the manager’s actions or decisions will be his basic concept or philosophy about the nature of man. Douglas McGregor presents a famous dissertation on this subject in the considera tion of Theory “X” and “Y”. Argyris offers a number of managerial consideration as well us Abraham Maslow propositions of various assumptions for managers to adopt for an enlightened approach to the individual-organization conflict situation. Research has led to conclusions that potential indivi dualorganization conflicts are heightened as management acts to reduce or constrain the individual opportunity to decide. Organizations tend to make final decisions without input of the employees wi th the expectation that no mistakes would be made, no errors. This fosters conflict as the expectation may s

be overwhelming. Unless the organization is supportive to the individual’s problem -solving efforts, such conflict continues and worsens

his ideas.
Another source of individual versus organizational conflict is generated by the “new man” versus the “old man”. The innovator is always in a less supportive environment than the entrenched old hand. 1. Chris Argyris, Personality and Organization (New York: Harper Torchbooks,1957), Chapters III andVII. 2. Douglas McGregor, The Human Side of Enterprise (New York: McGraw- Hill, 1960) 3. Argyris, pp.232-37

4. Abraham Maslow, Eupsychian Management (Homewood, Illinois: Richard D. Irwin, 1965), pp. 17-33 5. Harry Levinson, The Exceptional Executive: A psychological Conception (Cambridge, Massachussets: Harvard University Press, 1968), pp. 204-7.

6Argyris, p. 234
7. Fredrick W. Hertzberg, “The Wise Old Turk” Harvard Business Review, September- October 1974, pp. 70-80.
Sources of conflict
For managers to effectively manage conflicts, they need to understand their source. Basic sourcesof conflict are, semantic , role , values. Semantic sources are those stemming from some failure in communication. Traditionally, semantic has to do with the meaning of words, but here that is just one phase of its role. We use semantics to point out major source of conflict as the failure of two individuals to share fully the meaning of a communicative attempt. The cause of the failure may be technical problems in the communication process (static, filters, barriers etc)., or they may be ac tual differences in perception and understanding. The result being an absence of agreement thus conflict .

Role sources are those that rise out of the varying perceptions of people about the expected behaviours of themselves and others. Many of these come from the status and position levels in organizations. Others come from the structures and processes devised by management to organize work, channel effort ,and coordinate activity. Value sources have their foundations in the individuals value sets of people. These value sets readily contribute to differences between people because they are different. Theycause each of us at times to respond or behave in an unexpected manner because we are behaving as dictated by a value set not fully shared by our associates, hence a sense on their part of a difference between us. What is effective in one value conflict situation may not be in the next. The separation as statedabove is for the knowledgeable researcher and other resource persons. But our daily conflict is a combinatio of n

elements from more than one source. We can not therefore say that the three sources are distinct. E ach
affects the others to some degree.
Individual reaction to conflict
Since conflict may be positive or negative, there may be a range of reactions to conflict. Such rea ctions
may range from high expectations and pleasure to absolute rejection. Broadly, an individual in conflict situation has only two options i.e sign up or ship out. Massie and Douglas identify certain situation of dilemma in the conflict situation which they call “Zone of indifference” 8. Joseph L. Massie and John Douglas, Managing: A Contemporary Introduction (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice- Hall, 1973), p.219.

Basic to other considerations in resolving conflicts is that the parties to the conflict need to tr st each u other and must be capable and willing to locate the source of the conflict. Conflict situations pre sent different options to the concerned parties. We can decide to do nothing about the conflict. But what will be the result of non action?. If one remains in conflict situation then sooner rather than later the tension will increase and one of the parties will strive to win over the other o to drive him or her out. Or even r

worse, the losing party may become more aggressive or hostile and counter attack the element frustr ting a

The result of non action may be dysfunctional as the decision to do nothing may not be the best in certain situations while it may be good in some.

One method often applied in conflict situations is the use of super ordinate goals. For example, the entire work force, taken as a whole, is something of a super ordinate goal uniting conflicting groups bene ath that umbrella. |The manager gets the group to see how conflict affects productivity, thus reducing, the smaller groups stake in the overall organizations success. The approach is similar to the common enemy approach, wherein the groups in competition find unity viewing an outside group as a common enemy. . This unity can hide or lessen conflict in groups.

A unique method to resolve conflict is to increase interaction between conflicting groups by physically exchanging persons between conflicting groups. For example, if the gizmo unit is having difficulty dealing with the gadget unit, a temporary shifting of people between these groups could help the conflicting elements learn the other’s problems and frame of reference. the result could be better communications, greater understanding and less future conflict. The quickest resolution is a confrontation meeting. The manager should however, be warned that confrontation requires complete preparedness on his part.

He must have the facts of the conflict siuation t and confidence in his self-control and his ability to use diplomacy, tact and problem solving. But then, he must appreciate the fact that confrontation may worsen not better the situation. Basic to this efforts to resolve or reduce the conflict is the idea of avoiding win-lose situations. Sports and other recreational activities often acquire their flavor by win-lose situations, but the same may not be good for an organizational conflict situation. There are situations where the manager may seek to repress confl ict.

This is true where the differences between the two conflicting elements are not relevant to the organizational task. Such conflict is bad to the organization. These differences are petty and self serving, thereby causing activity in which the participants try to win to preserve the sanctity of the original stand. A significant aid to the manager in such conflicts is an understanding of the human process of perception, process of handling stimuli in accordance with our values, rules, wishes, an d

fears. With this understanding , the manager may explain to the conflicting parties how they are misreading the situational data. thus may find ways to suppress the conflict. 9. Dubin Robert. Human Relations in Administration Fourth Edition. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice- Hall, 1974.

10. Hersey, Paul, and Kenneth H. Blanchard, Management of Organizational behaviour, Second Edition.
Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice- Hall, 1974.
2.3 Critique of Existing Literature relevant to the study
Based on past studies and review of major issues, it has been established that conflict has a grea t impact on organizational effectiveness. Many studies have captured the basic foundations of the co nflict and therefore have provided the organizations with the data and information on best approaches to apply in conflict situations. However, the many alternative approaches may not fit every organization and thus some may require unique combinations that may be difficult and hence require high levels of understanding by the management to handle and probably prescribe best solutions to.


Chapter Three
3.1 Research Design
The research design in the case of Lucgeor Enterprises was the collection of data through intervie ws,
questionnaires , observations and surveys. Then the relevant data was sieved and refined to conform with the requirements of the study.
3.2 Population
Lucgeor Enterprises has an employee population of 43 persons both permanent and casual. Because the population was small , the researcher took the whole population for the purpose of data collection. Table 3.1 Study population


No of Respondents







Procurement & Stores






3.3 Sampling Frame
Due to the small no of employees , the whole population was considered and thus given equal treatme nt. 3.4 Sample and Sampling Technique
No. samples were taken as the whole population was taken for consideration. No technique was thus utilized as the whole population was considered.
3.5 Instruments
The instruments that the researcher applied in the process were, questionnaires and interviews to corroborate some of the information provided. Use of questionnaires were relevant and convenient because the respondents were all literate and thus were able to fill the forms independently. 3.6 Data Collection Procedure

The researcher prepared 43 pieces of questionnaires which he diligently distributed to all employee of s
Lucgeor Enterprises. the respondents were requested to fill the questionnaires within two weeks an d
return the same to the researcher.
3.7 Data Processing and Analysis
Data gathered from the respondents through the questionnaires were cleaned, then selected into vari us o
categories by coding . They were then analysed by use of quantitative and qualitative techniques . the information generated from the analysis were thus presented in the form of tables, pie charts, andbar graphs.


Chapter Four
4.1 Introduction
Data was presented in the form of tables, pie charts and graphs, which made the interpretation

4.2 Presentation
The researcher presented the data in various forms which captured all the areas of interest to the study
as follows.
4.3 Response rate.
The researcher administered 43 questionnaires of which the return rate was 41 thus constituting an average of 95%. The response was such that the researcher was able to gather fully the necessary daa t

for the study.
Table 4.1 Response rate.
No of questionnaires

No. of questionnaires





4.4 Causes of Conflict at Lucgeor Enterprises
The researcher administered 43 questionnaires of which the return rate was 41 thus constituting an average of 95%. The response was such that the researcher was able to gather fully the necessary daa t

for the study.

Table 4.2 Causes of Conflict
Causes of conflict

No. of respondents


Poor Management



Poor Remuneration







Lack of training and skills
Incompetence amongst staff


Pie Chart 4.1 Causes of Conflict

No. of Respondents
Poor Management
Poor Remuneration
Lack of Training
Incompetency among

From table 4.2 and chart 4.1 , the causes of conflicts at Lucgeor Enterprises were as follows. Poor Management
Poor Remuneration


Lack of training and skills
Incompetence amongst staff

The above information shows that the one issue which the employees feel as the main cause of conflict with management is poor remuneration. The second item that they prioritize as a major conflict are is a

the management of the organization. While the other conflict prone issue is lack of training and skills. The employees feel that the people put in charge of departments are not properly trained and thus lack the requisite skills to manage the departments. This thus results in incompetency of the employees to perform their tasks effectively.

Effects of Conflict
Table 4.3 Effects of Conflict
Effects of conflict

No. of respondents


Poor Performance



Lack of Motivation







Negative Stereotyping
Distorted Perceptions

Pie Chart 4.2 Effects of Conflict

No. of Respondents

Poor Performance
Lack of Motivation
Negative Stereotyping
Distorted Perceptions

From the above information, the main effect of conflict in organizations according to the responses are, Poor performance, Lack of motivation, Distorted perceptions and Negative stereotyping in that order.

From the above responses, there is a clear pattern regarding the cause and effect relationships amogst n
the various factors at play. It is worth noting that the cardinal goal of any organization is the achievement of efficient operational performance and productivity within the standard working hours. When an organization can not achieve the projected production levels within the set time lines, it is a cause to worry. An analysis of the causes and effects gave us results as stated below.

The main causes of conflict as stated above is the research were Poor remuneration, Poor management, Lack of training and skills and Incompetence amongst staff in that order. While the effects of conflicts in organizations are, Poor performance, Lack of motivation, Distorted perceptions and Negative stereotyping.


Chapter Five
Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations
5.1 Introduction
Workplace conflict is a major concern for most companies. It is inevitable in any situation where human beings operate. People have different values , beliefs and ways of life which they probably hold dear or believe to be the best as opposed to what other people have or believe in. Away has to be found to balance the various interests and align the same with the organizational goals. Proper systems of managing conflicts enables organizations to achieve the best out of such conflicts as well as meet the objectives and goals of the organization.

5.2 Summary
If managed poorly or avoided altogether, conflict can be extremely costly to an organization. If managed well, conflict presents an opportunity to uncover value and promote a healthy workplace. Many organizations are finding that their conflict management systems have been good financial investments, producing a healthy return. In addition, they are recognizing the value of many less tangible benefits (e.g. improved morale, lower turnover, increased efficiencies, and improved public relations). A rigorous four-phased process of

(i) Assessment
(ii) Design
(iii) Implementation and,
(iv) Operation and evaluation helps organization design effective conflict management systems to reap the maximum benefits of conflict management.

The above four phased approach to conflict management, encourages the Conflict Management System (CMS) team to genuinely seek to understand and incorporate the needs and interests of all affected constituencies and create an environment in which benefits of the CMS system can be effectively communicated, implemented and adminstered.

5.3 Conclusions
Productivity losses add up quickly when workplace conflict is not pro-actively and successfully managed. Over a number of days, months and years, multiplied by the number of employees affected, the real money value lost can be staggering. It is evident that there are tremendous advantages to pre-emptively deal with conflict in the workplace before it escalates beyond an organization’s ability to resolve, or , worse , even contain it.

A well designed CMS can have a significant positive impact on the quality of life if its employees, as well as its bottom line. Specifically, addressing the cost of conflict in the workplace can have a transformative impact on the overall health and well-being of an organization. 5.4 Recommendations

The management of an organization needs to focus on the best methods of handling conflicts and their resolution. This may involve
(I)Management Training
The training may have several components which may include
(a) The introductory part

The training should highlight the various causes , effects and outcomes of conflict situations. This will help to lower the frequency of destructive conflicts and reduce the impacts on the organizational operations. Such training would afford the trainees the necessary greater sense of self-awareness in dealing effectively with all types of conflict situations. Implementing a well -thought out training program to address the harmful effects of conflict is like performing preventive medicine. 12

the other components of the training would include
(b) Conflict Awareness training
© Communication Training
(d) Negotiation Training
(e) Manager Awareness
(f) Neutral third -party Interventions
B) Increasing Staff Salaries
In order to motivate employees, the management should consider raising the salaries of employees as away of motivating them to perform effectively.
C) Improving the Management of the Company

A deliberate effort and resources should be employed towards management development . The Management development should be tailored towards enhancing the managerial skills and interpersonal skills of management staff thus ensuring proper management of the organization. Again the management should be encouraged to adhere to the rules and regulations, procedures and laws governing industri al relations thus having good working relations with staff.

D) Staff Participation and Team working

To avoid negative stereotyping and disjointed communication, the management needs to focus on improving the participation of staff in decision making in the company besides ensuring that proper communication between employees themselves and between employees and management is cordial thus eliminating negative feeling and other forms of unwanted practices amongst staff, which may strain their working relationships.


Dubin Robert. Human Relations in Administration Fourth Edition. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice- Hall, 1974.
Hersey, Paul, and Kenneth H. Blanchard, Management of Organizational behaviour, Second Edition.
Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice- Hall, 1974.
Douglas McGregor, The Human Side of Enterprise (New York: McGraw- Hill, 1960) Abraham Maslow, Eupsychian Management (Homewood, Illinois: Richard D. Irwin, 1965), pp. 17-33 Harry Levinson, The Exceptional Executive: A psychological Conception (Cambridge, Massachussets: Harvard University Press, 1968), pp. 204-7.

Chris Argyris, Personality and Organization (New York: Harper Torchbooks,1957), Chapters III andVII. Argyris, pp.232-37
Argyris, p. 234
Fredrick W. Hertzberg, “The Wise Old Turk” Harvard Business Review, September- October 1974, pp. 70-80.
Joseph L. Massie and John Douglas, Managing: A Contemporary Introduction (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice- Hall, 1973), p.219.


I am a student of Mount Kenya University, taking an undergraduate degree programme in the field of Human Resources Management. As part of the requirement for the fulfilment of the course work, I am required to carry out a research study on the effects of Conflict in the workplace. I have chosen y our

organization, as the most potential one because of its size, convenience and reputation for the purpose of the study. I have prepared comprehensive questions regarding the subject matter to enable me gather information and gain the much needed insight. The information given will be treated with utmost confidentiality and purely for the academic purpose. Kindly give the most appropriate responses by ticking one of the options provided

Position / Rank

1. What are the main causes of conflict within the organization? Poor Management
Poor Remuneration
Lack of training and skills
Incompetence amongst staff

2 . What effect does conflict have on employees’ productivity? Poor Performance
Lack of Motivation
Distorted Perceptions
Negative Stereotyping

3 . What is the most effective Conflict Management method?
Open confrontation
Hiding feelings


4 . What kind of conflict management strategies does your organization use in resolving conflict in the organization?
Open confrontation
Hiding feelings

5. What are some of the costs associated with conflict in your organization? Lost Man-hours due to conflict
Lost business due to delays in executing jobs
Labour inefficiency

6 . Does the organization have conflict awareness training programme for its management? Yes.
If the answer to the above question is yes, please give the dates and how many times in the recent past

7 . What kind of conflict awareness training does the organization offer to its management? Communication
Neutral Third party


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