Conflicts in the workplace and personal relationships are inevitable. Whether the conflict involves a personal relationship with a neighbor that plays loud music or a problem between departments in the workplace, disputes arise and often require management to be successfully resolved. This paper will identify conflict management approaches used in my organization. In addition, it will compare the approach used in my workplace with my personal conflict management style. This discussion will demonstrate that my approach to conflict management is primarily based on maintaining happiness, while my workplace approaches conflict management from a business and productivity perspective. Both personal and organizational approaches have the ultimate goal of survival, in cases where extreme conflict management is required.
Conflict Management in the Workplace
There are many approaches to conflict management in the workplace, including an open door policy, peer review, ombudsman, union-management model, employer-run dispute resolution procedures, mediation, and fact-finding. In my organization, a combination of tools is sometimes employed to manage informal conflicts, including an open door policy, fact-finding, and punitive measures. For example, supervisors are available to hear the complaints and recommendations of employees, but this is discouraged and viewed as unsatisfactory workplace behavior, by many supervisors.
However, if a conflict is serious, those involved are typically asked to attend a meeting with their supervisor, in which steps are taken to resolve the problem. This dispute mediation begins when employees bring a formal complaint to management, including a written synopsis of the problem. If a fair solution cannot be reached in a procedural conflict involving departmental concerns, then management may change procedures. If the conflict involves personal relationships in the workplace, and then employees may be transferred other departments, suspended or terminated. Like most organizations, my employer's conflict management approach is based on productivity.