CHAPTER EIGHT : Managing Conflict in the Small Group - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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CHAPTER EIGHT : Managing Conflict in the Small Group

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  1. CHAPTER EIGHT:Managing Conflict in the Small Group

  2. What is Conflict? An expressed struggle between at least two interdependent parties who perceive incompatible ideas or feelings “Expressed struggle” shows that conflict involves communicating

  3. Myths About Conflict • Conflict should be avoided BUT…conflict can help us better understand a problem …can improve a decision …can increase member involvement …can increase cohesiveness

  4. Myths About Conflict • Conflicts result from communication breakdowns BUT…most conflicts stem from disagreement over values, not misunderstandings

  5. Myths About Conflict • All conflicts can be resolved by discussion BUT…conflicts over values are subjective & not easily resolvable …conflicts over scarce resources aren’t easily solvable because of physical limitations …conflicts over goals is also difficult to resolve SO: Focus on managing conflict

  6. Types of Conflict • Task Conflict (AKA Substantive Conflict) Disagreement over ideas, meanings, issues, and other matters relevant to the task • Relational Conflict (AKA Affective Conflict) Interpersonal power clashes, likes, dislikes, etc. NOT related to the task

  7. Managing Conflict STYLES • Avoidance Unwillingness to confront or engage in conflict • Often used when people or relationships are at root of conflict • May be appropriate if issue is unimportant or if not speaking up will not harm group’s decision

  8. Conflict-Management Styles • Accommodation Giving in to appease the other person • Downplays own needs to better meet needs of others • Can create problems in future if member really has strong disagreement but was accommodating

  9. Conflict-Management Styles • Competition Desire to come out ahead at the expense of others • Usually has negative effect on group • Tends to escalate; can result in total shutdown of group • BUT…if issue is important, don’t disregard basic beliefs & values: speak up!

  10. Conflict-Management Styles • Collaboration Working to find mutually-agreeable solution • Takes a great deal of time & energy • Tends to result in collaborative member feeling greater satisfaction

  11. Conflict-Management Styles • Compromise Manage issue by giving a little & taking a little • Unlike in collaboration, each person gives up something to get something • Can be more beneficial than collaboration if time is limited • Can ONLY work if everyone believes solution is fair

  12. Ethical Disagreement • Guidelines for ethical disagreement: • Express your disagreement • Stick with the issue at hand • Use sensitivity • Disagree with the idea, not the person

  13. Nominal Group Technique Alternates between individual & group work to help group hear from every member on controversial issue • State problem/issue clearly & concisely • Everyone takes 10-15 minutes to individually list the characteristics of the problem • All suggestions are listed on chart • Members clarify but do not evaluate • Each member ranks top suggestions • Group discussion of top-ranked items • Decision

  14. Principled Negotiation Strategy that encourages all participants in a conflict situation to collaborate by expressing their needs and searching for alternatives that meet those needs • Separate people from problem • Focus on interests, not positions • Create options for mutual gain • Use objective criteria