Interpersonal Conflict Methods

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Methods of resolving interpersonal conflict Early studies by Blake and Mouton [1] originally proposed five different methods of conflict resolution – Smoothing, Compromising, Withdrawing, Forcing and Confrontation or Problem Solving. These methods can be summarized as follows: • Smoothing – Differences are avoided while common interests are emphasized resulting in issues that may cause hurt feelings not being discussed. • Compromising – No clear winner as an intermediate position is found through bargaining • Withdrawing – Parties retreat from the conflict • Forcing – Participants are competitors and have set positions they attempt to enforce on each other, thus creating a winner and a looser. • Confrontation or Problem Solving – Honest exchange…show more content…
A leader’s attitude towards conflict will shift the situation to a positive or negative experience for the company and participants. For leaders to be effective at conflict resolution a helping relationship based on mutual trust, respect, candid communication and empathy needs to be employed. Conflict in Organizations Bercovitch [4] found that Conflict has no predetermined course or development thus it seems erroneous to view conflict from a negative perspective only as destructive or dysfunctional. It is true that conflict may be uncomfortable, it may even be a source of problems, but it is absolutely necessary if change is to occur, if organizations are to survive and adapt. Organizational change and innovation does not just happen, it requires a stimulant. That stimulant is conflict. Supplier-Buyer Conflict According to Reve and Stem [5], Conflict is nearly inescapable in buyer-supplier relationships largely due to both parties attempting to maximise their…show more content…
The most effective conflict resolution technique was found to be the Confrontational or Problem Solving method. This works well in inter-organizational conflict and buyer-supplier relationships that are functional and well developed. However, depending on the buyer-supplier relationship and degree of conflict, different approaches are necessary. Buyers often prefer problem solving but suppliers often use accommodation and avoidance. However, suppliers where more satisfied when they used problem solving making their preference for avoidance counter
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