The Importance of Conflict Management
But we cannot avoid conflict, conflict with society, other individuals and with oneself. Conflicts may be sources of defeat, lost life and a limitation of our potentiality, but they may also lead to a greater depth of living and the birth of more far-reaching unites, which flourish in the tensions that engender them.
The amount of entropy in corporate America has increased substantially because of two basic reasons. The first involves the immigration of a large and continuous population of ethnic, migrant workers from different corners of the world. These knowledge workers are products of varying, and at times diametrically opposing environments that in turn, affect their perceptions and subsequently the formulation of their opinions and beliefs. This may be illustrated in a comparison between two coworkers; a wealthy Swede and a lower-middle class Pakistani (first world and LDC comparison) working on the same project simultaneously. Their perspectives on several issues will vary, as their upbringing is mirror opposite.
The second reason may be attributed to the era of globalization, which has created a favorable environment for mergers and acquisitions. The acquisition of smaller companies by a large firm creates large amounts of conflict within the organization, as the acquired company becomes a mere sub culture within the larger firm. A collection of these sub cultures causes cross-cultural conflicts between employees as each employee has their own fixed mindset. However, they now have to adopt a new set of (conflicting) goals, work in a different environment under a separate management team. The resultant conflict is harmful to the existing organizational environment, and unless rectified, produces a self-destruct climate that does not support the long-term goals of the corporation.
As corporate America enters the next millennium, it is faced with the increasingly difficult task of integrating these varying opinions, climates and management styles to produce an environment that supports the company¡¦s long term¡¦s goals. This process of integration is better understood by studying the science of conflict management.
A Conflict is a process that encompasses all kinds of antagonistic interactions (passive resistance to overt aggression) among people, designed to inhibit the attainment of goals of another party that has dissimilar and incompatible objectives.
Conflict management involves resolving these negative processes through communication and compromise. It is the art of persuading two antagonistic parties to come to a workable solution on a debatable subject to attain a common goal.
This paper performs an acute dissection of organizational conflict. It emphasizes that a certain amount of conflict is necessary for corporations to constantly innovate and survive in a turbulent environment. Particular attention is devoted to organizational metamorphoses...