Conflict occurs in all organizations. It presents itself in the form of arguing, defensiveness, finger-pointing, overpowering, and passive aggression, just to name a few.
However, while conflict has the potential to be very destructive, it also has the potential to create tremendous opportunity for growth. But, when handled incorrectly, conflict can destroy morale, increase employee turnover, discourage creativity, and polarize the team.
Dynamics of Conflict:
It’s important to note – The way in which you approach conflict greatly influences the outcome.
- Conflict is neither good nor bad, but rather, it’s inevitable. The way in which conflict is managed determines whether it’s productive or destructive. Luckily, there are tools available that can be extremely helpful in fostering an environment for productive conflict.
- Different behavioral styles can determine how an individual is more likely to handle conflict. There are four conflict management styles: dominant style, influence style, conscientious style, and steadiness style. These styles are correlated with a particular behavioral style. Each style has its own mixture of productive and destructive tendencies.
- There are rules for handling conflict. Rules play a vital role in conflict management because they support productive resolution. In essence, conflict without rules is like a freeway without a speed limit – things can go from 0 to 100 really quickly!
- An individual’s response to conflict is within their control. With practice and mindfulness, individuals can learn how to handle conflict more productively. Learning your co-worker’s DiSC style is also very helpful for handling conflict. It gives you the awareness of other’s conflict behaviors and how those behaviors differ from your own.
Team members and leaders need to understand the dynamics of conflict to ensure that conflict does not get out of hand.
Check out the video below for managing conflict insights from Dr. Switzer.
Did you know?
As an authorized partner, we offer the DiSC Productive Conflict Profile. This profile will help you understand your style in conflict and how you can more effectively handle conflict.
Check out the video below for a more detailed explanation of the DiSC Productive Conflict Profile.