Workplace conflicts is a reality for many companies. It occurs on a regular basis in all companies across the globe. Unresolved conflict in the workplace can lead to a loss of employee productivity and affect an employer’s bottom line. Organizational conflict is a workplace problem that can escalate to a point where it threatens the integrity of the organization. This toolkit examines the root causes and possible consequences of organizational conflict and how employers should respond to such conflict. The first steps in managing workplace conflict belong with those who are at war with each other.
Those involved in any type of conflict within an organization need to understand how it affects not only them but their employer as well. The best way to begin to address workplace conflict is to take stock of who is to blame for any hostility or frustration on the job. A common theme among those who find themselves on the receiving end of conflict is the “power of dominance.”
In organizations where there is a dominant group, conflict often breaks out between members of that group. The outcome of any workplace conflict — good or bad — usually involves some form of power shift. If this occurs among employees in an office or in a team, it is known as “push/pull.” Those who are “pushy” and want more control over the workplace environment will often use persuasion and emotional persuasion to get others to go along with their desires. Those who are “pulled” will likely try to find ways to be more beneficial to the employer. These actions can include offering advice, suggestions, and even suggestions that will help the company succeed.
On the other hand, those who want their jobs back and are “pulled” will likely make accusations and not offer any constructive advice. They may even resort to violence or ill-wishing, when they feel that their position is in danger. Such behavior often reflects a lack of respect for their employer. In addition, some employees will simply refuse to follow their bosses’ instructions, even if this means that they will be negatively impacted by what they do. Workplace conflict resolutions professionals must be aware of these behaviors and try to talk down the circumstances before they become heated and personal.
Another common Conflict Management involves co-workers who have differing or conflicting perceptions of an issue. There are several instances where one co-worker’s perception is the right and another’s is wrong. When this happens, it can create a rift between the two individuals. It is important to work through any differences and set aside personal opinions to find the right resolution.
Finally, there are situations where both managers and co-workers are at fault for a particular problem. Workplace conflict resolution professionals are well-trained to handle these situations. The ultimate goal is to reach a resolution where everyone feels satisfied with the outcome. If an employee is unhappy with their performance or co-workers are upset about a situation, the manager has to try to soothe the situation and make sure that everyone is happy with the result. If the