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27 - Conflict Resolution

Conflict – Thwarting another person’s wants, needs or goals

Sources of Conflict

  • Frustration over:Limited resources
    Loss of control
    Unmet needs or desires
    Expectations don’t meet reality

  • Individual / cultural differences

  • Ineffective communication

  • Differences in defining your relationship

  • Competition

Tools for effectively handling conflict

  • Effective CommunicationActive Listening

    Responsible Language
    Avoid statements with:“it”

    Use statements with:“I”
    Valuing Differences
    Resolving Conflicts

Approaches to Conflict

  • Nonassertive or Avoiding  – Inability or unwillingness to express thoughts or feelings in a conflict.

  • Direct Aggression – expressing criticism or demand that threatens another.

  • Passive Aggression – expressing hostility in an obscure way. Recipient confused.

  • Indirect Communication – conveys message in a round about manner to save “face” with recipient. Not hostile.  Sometimes takes the form of sarcasm.

  • Assertion – expresses needs, thoughts, feelings, clearly without judging or dictating. Focuses on others.

Resolution Styles

  • Collaborating – highly assertive and cooperative, win-win

  • Compromising – moderately assertive and cooperative, (many believe this to be best style – false!) both still give up something. lose-lose

  • Competing – assertive and uncooperative, win-lose

  • Accommodating – unassertive and uncooperative, lose-lose

Tips for Resolving Conflicts

  • Anticipate resistance

  • Respect different views

  • Incorporate opposing viewpoints

  • Focus on facts; not personality

  • Use “I/We” language

  • Avoid criticism

  • Show concern for others

  • Level the playing field – remove levels of authority or power

  • Praise when possible

  • Agree to differ

  • Encourage involvement in process

Win–Win Conflict Strategy (John Dewey)

  1. Define the Conflict

  2. Analyze the Problem

  3. Establish Criteria for a Solution

  4. Communicate cooperative intentionsIdentify needs; express concerns

  5. Brainstorm Solutions

  6. Decide on a solution

  7. Implement the solution

  8. Follow up on the solution

27 - Conflict Resolution
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