Essays on Managing Conflicts in the Organisation Case Study

Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing

The paper "Managing Conflicts in the Organisation " Is a wonderful example of a Management Case Study. The paper looks at the conflict in Gladstone university's department of finance. The introduction defines the term conflict and gives some types of conflicts experienced in an organization. The paper then looks at the conflict at Gladstone University discussing the conflict at length. The main players in the conflict are identified. Also identified are the main issues in the conflict. The main issues that feed conflict in the department are the perceived discrimination of men.

In other words, Mike, One of the main players into the conflict, thinks that women are being favored in the department. Another main issue is the emotionalism of the two principal players. The proposed management strategies of the conflict are also given. The conclusion is a call to the management of organizations to contain conflicts as soon as they emerge. This is because conflicts are exceedingly damaging to the organization. Introduction Self-managing teams in organizations present various problems. Conflict in the workplace is defined as the process that begins with the perceived frustration of one party by another.

This is because the self-managing team’ s structural design produces conflicts. These conflicts can be task conflicts; these are the disagreements of the group members on viewpoints, opinions, and ideas. More often than not, the conflicts are going to be relational. Relational conflicts are defined as the discernment of interpersonal incompatibilities among the group members (Langfred 2007, p. 885-900). The other type of conflict that manifests in self-managing teams is process conflict. Process conflict is strong divergence of opinion as to how a process should proceed.

Conflict is one of the things that the management in any organization tries to prevent. Conflict is counterproductive. Conflict in the organization is potentially harmful to group processes such as performance, cooperation, and coordination. Conflict negatively affects trust and also lowers autonomy (Langfred 2007, p. 885-900). The problem The finance department at Gladstone University is a self-managing team. The department is further divided into smaller divisions that are all self-managing. Since five years back, the department has been undergoing key restructuring transformations. Some of the employees who have been in the department are Jess and Mike.

Both employees entered the department roughly at the same time. Five years ago, Jess was promoted to a senior position within the department. Jess’ s promotion into a senior position has not gone down well with Mike. He feels discriminated for not having been chosen for a senior position in the company. A few months after the promotion of Jess mike said remarkably hurtful things to her. They have been trying to avoid each other since that time. All the time Mike feels that Jess has been trying to thwart his attempts to get into a senior position.

The two have been trying to avoid each other since that incident five years ago. The two do not trust each other at all. They have been having a relational conflict. As outlined in the introduction, relational conflict is characterized by the perception of incompatibility among group members. This has been the case at the finance department between Mike and Jess. This is because this conflict has lowered the trust these two team workers have had for one another.

This is because alike all self managing teams, the finance department tasks are structured to be complementary. Mike supplies reports to Jess that she uses to compile her work. Mike complains that the reports that Jess produces are irrelevant, that they are useless. On the other hand, Mike needs these reports to compile the monthly revenue collection reports. Because of the relational nature of the conflict, the conflict has also degenerated into emotional conflict (Glinow, Shapiro & Brett 2004, p. 580-83). This is characterized by negative emotions such as anger, irritation and frustration.

This normally occurs in heterogeneous teams due to interpretative barriers (Fisher & Ury 1981, p. 79). This has proved to be highly dysfunctional of the team especially in performing team-related tasks (Glinow, Shapiro & Brett 2004, p. 580-83). This is because the tasks of a team in a department are independent of the tasks other departments.


Filley, A, C 1975, Interpersonal Conflict Resolution, Scott, Foreman, Glenview, IL, pp 54.

Fishbein, M. and Ajzen, I, 1975, Belief, Attitude and Behavior: An Introduction to Theory and Research, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA, 116.

Fisher, R and Ury, W. 1981, Getting to YES: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, Houghton Miflftin, Boston, pp 79.

Gladwin, N and Walter, I. 1980, Multinationals under Fire: Lessons in the Management of Conflict, Wiley, New York, pp 214.

Glinow, M, Shapiro, Brett, 2004, Can we talk, and should we? Managing emotional conflict

in multicultural teams Academy of Management Review, Vol. 29, No. 4, 580-83.

Hall, J, 1969, Conflict Management Survey, Teleometrics, Conroe, TX, pp 73.

Langfred, W, 2007, The downside of self-management: a longitudinal study of the effects of conflict on trust, autonomy, and task interdependence in self-managing teams, Academy of Management Journal , Vol. 50, No. 4, 885–900.

Neale, M. and Bazerman, M, 1991, Cognition and Rationality in Negotiation, Free Press, New York, pp 135.

Thomas, K, W 1992, Conflict and conflict management: Reflections and update Journal of organizational behavior, vol. 13, 265-274.

Wiseman, J, W 1978, 'Reconciling "incompatible" positions'. Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 14(6), 138.

Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
Contact Us