Presentation on theme: "Examining Conflict Styles: How Do You Manage Conflict?"— Presentation transcript:
1 Examining Conflict Styles: How Do You Manage Conflict? Renee A. Meyers, Ph.D.Department of Communication, UWMColloquium MCWFebruary 13, 2008
2 Typical View of Conflict Most people view conflict as difficult and unpleasantCompetitiveEmotionalResults in decreased communicationMisperception and biasRigid positionsMagnifies differences, minimizes similaritiesEscalates issues and problems
3 Everyday Conflict Conflict is everyday occurrence Disagreement over proceduresDisagreement over ideasDisagreement over needs
4 Alternative View of Conflict Assumptions about conflictConflict is comprehensible social processConflict management skills can be learned; good conflict managers are not born, but madeConflict management skills improve through learning, training, and practiceConflict management is problem solving that involves both advocacy and attention to relationships
5 Everyday Conflict Goals and Objectives Understand own conflict management styleLearn when your style works bestIntroduce integrative model for conflict managementTo maximize the value you derive from this course you should understand my key assumptions. First, negotiation is a comprehensible social process. It is not a mystical process in a black box; it can be analyzed, understood, and modeled. Second, negotiation is a learnable and teachable skill. Negotiators are made, not born, and skills can be improved and relearned throughout life. Third, change and improvement in negotiating behavior require a combination of intellectual training and behavioral skill development.In other words, you can watch all the videos in the world about improving your tennis or golf games, but if you don’t get out and practice your stroke, you are unlikely to improve.The same is true of negotiation. We will spend fully 1/2 of the time negotiating in class. What you take away from the seminar will depend largely on your willingness in the negotiations to practice different/uncomfortable strategies and tactics. In each debrief, we will connect the key principles to your experience here at NM.You all have amnesty in this room. Nothing you say or do here can be held against you.
7 Conflict Management Styles HighLowAccommodatingCollaborativeAvoidanceCompetitiveCompromiseConcern for other(cooperativeness)We will spend most of our time in the Integrative/Distributive quadrants.What are some of risks of Avoiding or Accommodating?Propensity of members of this group (and possibly NM culture in general) to avoid conflict.
8 Examining StylesComplete handout to determine how one communicates in each styleAvoidantCompetitiveAccommodatingCompromisingCollaborative
9 Styles in ScenarioWhat style(s) are Mary and Jim using in the conflict scenario?Are these appropriate? If you were a conflict management specialist, what would you suggest to Jim and Mary?
10 When To Use Each Style When might each of the styles be most useful? AvoidantCompetitiveAccommodatingCompromisingCollaborative
11 Employing Strategies Avoiding When issue is trivial When potential disruption outweighs the benefits of resolutionTo let people cool down and regain perspective
12 Employing Strategies Competitive—advocate own position On issues vital to company welfare, and you know you are rightAgainst people who will take advantage of noncompetitive behaviorWhen you are on equal status with other person(s)
13 Employing Strategies Accommodating When you find you are wrong—to allow a better position to be heard, and to show reasonablenessTo build social credits for later issuesWhen harmony and stability are paramountTo minimize loss when you are outmatched and losing
14 Employing Strategies Compromising To achieve temporary settlements To arrive at expedient solutions under time pressureWhen opponents of equal power are committed to mutually exclusive goals
15 Employing Strategies Collaborative When both sets of concerns are too important to be compromisedTo merge insights from people of different perspectivesTo gain commitment by incorporating concerns into a consensusTo work through relational issues that have interfered with relationship development
16 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Recognize the value of the relationshipNarrow to one issueNeutralize defensiveness and set up integrative frameworkEcho and explain “stories”Develop a workable solutionImplement plan and be accountable
17 Planning for Integrative Conflict Management What is the primary issue?What is your story?What do you want?Where is your story weak, vulnerable, unreasonable?What other options do you have?What is the other person’s story?What will this person want?What are their alternatives?What additional information do you need to understand their position?What are the connections between the stories?What will be the major differences?Where will you, and the other party, become most defensive?What are the possible benefits to both parties?
18 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Start by recognizing the value of the relationship:I wanted to talk to you today because I would like us to continue to work together effectively . . .I wanted to talk to you about this because I would appreciate your help making my clinic successful. . .I wanted to talk to you because I value your friendship . . .
19 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Narrow to one issueI want to talk about the assignment of residents. I hope that we can figure out something that works for both of us.ORI want to talk about how we manage our differencesBUT NOT BOTH!!Discussing everything “and the kitchen sink” is not productive. Only leads to greater defensiveness.
20 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Neutralize defensiveness and set up integrative framework—working together toward goalI really would like it if we could figure out a way to provide enough residents for my clinic. I feel like I can’t get the work done well otherwise.Use “we” language as much as possibleUse “I” language instead of “you” language
21 Integrative Model for Conflict Management How to say:YOU never give me enough residentsIt feels to me like I never have enough residents to do the job wellYOU always go behind my back to the chairI would prefer if we could work out our difference between us before we have to get the chair involvedYOU’RE so dumb, stupid, dense, incompetent . . .I think it would help if we both understood each other’s positions
22 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Get Both Stories on the TableAsk the other person to explain their story/viewpoint:Jim: It feels like I never have enough residents for my clinic. I think it is an excellent opportunity for residents, and I would like them to get this opportunity. I feel like I just can’t do justice to the clinic if I never have enough residents.Echo back this person’s story (as you understand it) and then explain your story/viewpoint:Mary: I can see that you are very committed to your clinic and to the education of the residents. It is hard sometimes to know ahead of time how many residents can be assigned. I have many requests and sometimes I can’t honor all of them
23 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Is there a solution, or are there solutions, that would fit both parties’ needs regarding the resident assignment problem?On rotational basis, clinics get first requestRevisit resident assignment policy to see if changes should be madeDetermine minimum and maximum of each clinic, and seek to provide minimum number first
24 Integrative Model for Conflict Management Implement plan and be accountableMake sure to check up periodically (or within a set time frame) to make sure the solution is working (or still working).
25 Behavior of Skilled Conflict Managers Appreciative MovesAppreciate other person’s situation—solicit his/her story and viewsEncourage the other person to elaborateRespect the other person’s objections—anticipate them and recognize them yourselfAppreciate other person’s feelingsPay attention to undercurrentsPay attention to nonverbal cues
26 Behavior of Skilled Conflict Managers Appreciate the other person’s ideasRespond to the other person’s ideas—suspend judgment, and consider ideasLink the other person’s ideas with yoursAppreciate the other person’s faceShow respect for the other personMake it easy for the other person to retreatAppreciate the solution that has been made, and review it with other party at end of conflict session
27 Where Have We Been Today? Understand own conflict management styleLearn when your style works bestIntroduce integrative model for conflict management