Structured conflict is a positive kind of conflict that can lead to much better group cohesion and decision making. There are two types of conflict that may occur in a group decision process. These are c-type conflict or cognitive and a-type conflict, affective conflict (McWilliams & Williams 2014).
C-type conflict is disagreeing with others interpretations or opinions. Group members where c-type conflict occurs will disagree with other member’s opinions, based on their previous experiences and expertise. C-type conflict can also be explained as the willingness to analyse and compare their differences in order to produce the best possible solution.
A-type conflict is a disagreement that focuses on the person or personal issues rather than the idea presented. Disagreement can become rather personal and hurtful instead of professional. ‘A-type conflict often results in hostility, anger, resentment, distrust, cynicism and apathy’ ...view middle of the document...
Nominal group technique is a group decision making method that begins and ends with the group writing down and evaluating ideas to be shared with the group It starts with members acting like individuals writing down as many problem definitions and alterative solutions as possible in a ‘quiet time’ (Claxton, Ritchie & Zaichkowsky 1980). Once the quiet time has finished the group leader instructs each group member to read aloud what they wrote, as they read the ideas are recorded on flipcharts and wallboards for all to see. The next step in the technique is when each member discusses advantages and disadvantageous of each idea. The technique then finishes with another quite time although this time each member as an individual ranks the ideas presented. Group members then read aloud their rankings and the idea with the highest rank is selected. This technique decreases a-type conflict which in turn improves group decision making. However, this method all restricts c-type conflict.
Delphi Technique is a method where a decision making process takes places where experts in a panel respond to questions to each question and to each other until reaching a final agreement on an issue (Meskell, Murphy, Shaw & Casey 2014). The first step in this method is to assemble a panel of experts. The second step is to create a list of open ended questions for the experts. In step three, each individual member in the panel writes down there responses. The step then continues with each written response getting analysed, summarised and fed back to the panel for reactions until the members reach an agreement.
Brain storming is the last of approaches and brain storming consists of group members generating a large number of ideas or alternative solutions (Lynch, Murthy & Engle 2009). In contrast to the other approaches brain storming has rules and these four rules are:
1. The more ideas, the better
2. All ideas are accepted, no matter what the idea may be
3. Ideas generated should be used to get even more ideas
4. Any criticism or evaluation is not permitted.
Brain storming can both be done verbally and written on paper, or electronically where members will voice their ideas through computers.