Conflict in Groups Conflict The disagreement and disharmony that occurs in groups when differences are expressed regarding ideas, methods, and/or members
Transform climates leads to managing conflict. What is conflict? 3
Conflict: Conflict has been defined by researchers Hocker and Wilmot (1992) as: “An expressed struggle between at least two interdependent parties who perceive incompatible goals, scarce rewards and interference from the other party in achieving their goals.” 4
Conflict: In other words, conflict is “an interruption in harmony.” 5
Conflicts are going to happen in all groups. It is impossible to avoid. However, conflicts can and are healthy. 6
Conflicts are going to happen in all groups. Conflicts enable groups to work out difference. 7
Conflicts are going to happen in all groups. Conflict can bring validation of group relationships and emerges with every resolved conflict. 8
Constructive conflict Group members express disagreement in a way that values everyone’s contributions and promotes the group’s goal. Respect others Focus on issues Other: _________ Destructive conflict Group members create hostility and prevent achievement of the group’s goal. Insult others Inflexible and uncooperative Other: _________ Constructive and Destructive Conflict
Avoidance Conflict Style • Members are unable or unwilling to accomplish their own goals or contribute to achieving the group’s goal. • Avoidance fails to address the problem and can increase group tensions.
Accommodation Conflict Styles • Members give in to other members at the expense of their own goals. • Members believe that giving in helps even when the group would benefit from more analysis and discussion.
Competition Conflict Style • Group members are more concerned with their own goals than with meeting the needs of the group. • Competition may be characterized by hostility, ridicule, and personal attacks.
Compromise Conflict Style • Members give up some goals in order to achieve others. • Members accept losses in exchange for gaining something else. • Better options may be missed if group only uses this style.
Collaboration Conflict Style • Members search for new solutions that will achieve both individual goals and the goals of the group. • Effective collaboration requires a lot of time and energy for discussions in which all members fully participate.
Selecting a Conflict Style Criteria for Selecting a Conflict Style: • How important is the issue to you? • _______________________________ • How important is it to maintain positive relationships in the group? • How much time does the group have? • _______________________________
The 4Rs Method • Reasons. What are the reasons for or causes of the conflict? • Reactions. How are group members reacting to one another? • Results. What are the consequences of the group’s current approach to the conflict? • Resolution. What are the available methods for resolving the conflict?
The A-E-I-O-U Method • A – Assume the other members mean well. • E – Express your feelings. • I – Identify what you would like to happen. • O – Outcomes you expect are made clear. • U – A mutual Understanding is achieved.
Negotiation • A process of bargaining in order to settle differences or reach solutions. • Principled negotiation: • separates people from the problem. • focuses on group interests, not positions. • generates a variety of possible solutions. • insists on objective criteria.
Conflict Mediation Employs the services of an impartial third party who guides, coaches, and encourages disputants through negotiation to successful resolution and agreement William D. Kimsey, Rex M. Fuller, and Bruce C. McKinney, Mediation and Conflict Management: General Mediation Manual
Group Cohesion Cohesion is the mutual attraction that holds members of a group together Strategies for enhancing group cohesion: • Establish a group identity and traditions. • Emphasize teamwork. • Recognize and reward contributions. • Respect group members.
Groupthink Groupthink The deterioration of group effectiveness that results from in-group pressure • Highly cohesive groups are at greater risk of succumbing to groupthink. • Irving Janis identifies 8 symptoms and expressions of groupthink.
Strategies for Avoiding Groupthink • Ask all members to serve as critical evaluators. • Assign several members to work on the same problem independently. • Discuss the group’s progress with someone outside the group. • Invite an expert to join a meeting and encourage constructive criticism. • Before finalizing a decision, give members a second chance to express doubts.
Adapting to Differences • Culture: Members from cultures that value conformity are less likely to express disagreement than those from cultures that place a higher value on individualism. • Gender: Women tend to avoid conflict; men and women differ in what is expected of them in conflicts.
If in a group with Conflict, it’s a Bad group. Conflict Damages Groups Conflict is Bad Myths About Conflict 26
Physical Psychological Temporal Cultural Context of Conflict: Microsoft Image 27
Depletion of Energy Close Self Off from Other Negatives Effects of Conflict: Microsoft Image 28
Better Understanding Prevent Festering Hostilities Reinforces Worth of Group Positives Effects of Conflict: Microsoft Image 29
Group Conflict Content Objects Events Persons Relationship – Power or Status Things we fight over: Microsoft Image 30
Preparing for Conflict - Before Try to Fight in Private Be Sure Everyone is Ready to Fight Know What You’re Fighting About Fight about Solvable Problems Consider Reexamining Beliefs Small Group Conflict 31
Preparing for Conflict - After Learn from Conflict Keep Conflict in Perspective Discuss Feelings with Other(s) Demonstrate Positive Feelings Small Group Conflict Microsoft Image 32
Conflicts can be healthy: Conflicts: Are Needed Can Be Productive Can Be Rewarding Can Be Beneficial Microsoft Image 33
Preserve Dignity and Respect of Members Listen with Empathy Seek and Emphasize Common Ground Value Diversity and Differences Coping Principles of Workplace Conflict: 34
Conflict Management Skills Win-Lose Strategies Lose-Lose Strategies Win-Win Strategies Small Group Conflict 35
Argument and Argumentation Argument A claim supported by evidence or reasons for accepting it Argumentation The process of advocating a position, analyzing competing ideas, and influencing others
Why Argue? Argumentation in Groups • Promotes Understanding • Promotes Critical Thinking • Enhances Persuasion • Avoids Groupthink • Improves Group Decision Making
Argumentativeness • Argumentativeness is a willingness to argue controversial issues with others. • Argumentativeness does not necessarily promote hostility. • The argumentative person focuses on discussing issues, not attacking others.
How Argumentative Are You? • Do you avoid arguments? • Are you energetic and enthusiastic when you argue? • Does arguing often create more problems for you than it solves? • Do feel pleased when you win an argument? • When you finish arguing, do you feel nervous or upset? • Do you enjoy a good argument? Dominic Infante and Andrew Rancer’s Argumentativeness Scale
Components of the Toulmin Model of Argument Three Basic Elements • Claim– the conclusion or position you are advocating • Data – the evidence you use to support the claim • Warrant– your explanation of how the data support and prove the claim
Components of the Toulmin Model of Argument Three Additional Elements • Backing – provides support for the argument’s warrant • Reservation –recognizes exceptions to an argument; indicates that a claim may not be true under certain circumstances • Qualifier– states the degree to which the claim appears to be true
The Toulmin Model Qualifier Data Claim Warrant Reservation Backing
Types of Supporting Evidence • Fact: Verifiable observations, experiences, or events known to be true • Opinions: Personal conclusions regarding the meaning or interpretation of facts • Definitions: Clarify the meaning of a word, phrase, or concept • Descriptions: Create a mental image of a person, event, place, or object
Supporting Evidence • Examples: Refer to specific cases or instances • Illustrations: Longer, extended example • Statistics: Present information in numerical form
PowerPoint Quiz “This critically acclaimed novel spans six decades in the life of one man.” What kind of supporting material is used in this statement? • Fact • Opinion • Description • Example • Illustration
PowerPoint Quiz “I loved this unique, beautifully written novel. It is a remarkable work marked by startling plot twists and amazing characters.” What kind of supporting material is used in this statement? • Fact • Opinion • Statistic • Example • Illustration
Presenting Your Arguments Four-step Process • State your claim. • Present evidence. • Provide reasoning. • Summarize the argument.
Types of Claims Claims of fact – attempts to prove a truth or to identify a cause Claim of conjecture- suggests that something will or will not happen Claims of value – evaluates something’s quality or worth Claims of policy – recommend a course of action