Essay Conflicts Work

Conflict in the Workplace Essay

905 Words4 Pages

The scenario about drug testing in the workplace provided key lessons to consider in a negotiation. Those lessons influenced the way I approach a negotiation and altered how I look at conflict in the workplace.
It is important to understand that, while a negotiation framework is helpful in problem solving, the structure of a framework is flexible. Prior to the negotiation, the situation created a clear framework. Terry, the truck driver, tested positive for drugs. As a consequence of is test results, Terry meet with his superior and a counselor to discuss his future at the company. The rule was very clear: drivers are tested for drugs. Initially, I viewed the rule as identical to policy, and a rigid rule left little room for negotiation.…show more content…

The framework must be flexible enough to absorb new information
Another reason for a flexible negotiation framework is consideration of fairness. Terry’s job was on the line and had everything to lose. In the scenario, the negotiation was emotionally charged and managers considered whether the punishment fit the crime. I had difficultly feeling remorse for Terry because of the stigma associated with drug use. He didn’t use drugs but it was his word against science, and there was no way to win the argument. In looking back, I considered other circumstances, such as if Terry had gotten a DUI during a vacation, and came to the conclusion that, while are consequences for breaking a corporate rule, further discussions about proper reprimand were necessary. The meeting between the superior, Employee Assistance Program representative and Terry allowed for questions of justice to arise. Bringing additional details and personal considerations into the discussion made it difficult to come to a solution, but it ensured that the policy fit the situation.
The question of justice will also influence how I will deal with conflict in the workplace. When addressing a situation, I tend to look at it through the filter of policy. For example, what does the policy say about Terry’s drug problem and what are the prescribed actions? Instead, I should look at in the reverse: does Terry’s drug problem fit within the policy and is

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Conflict Essay

1096 Words5 Pages


Conflict is defined as the behaviour due to which people differ in their feelings, thought and/or actions. Collins (1995) states that the conflict is a ‘serious disagreement and argument about something important’ and also as ‘a serious difference between two or more beliefs, ideas or interests’ (cf. Kumaraswamy, 1997, p. 96). In general it is believed that conflicts are the underlying cause of disputes. In other words, dispute is a manifestation of the deep rooted conflict. A dispute is defined as ‘a class or kind of conflict, which manifests itself in distinct, justifiable issues. It involves disagreement over issues capable of resolution by negotiation, mediation or third party adjudication’…show more content…

So, it is said that a conflict can exist without a dispute but a dispute cannot exist without a conflict (Spangler and Burgess, 2003).
Many authors have highlighted the inevitability of conflicts on the other hand it is said that disputes can be prevented or at least can be minimized through proper management. Conflicts are ubiquitous where ever a large number of people are involved i.e. where the human relationships proliferate (Kumaraswamy, 1997). People are the principle resource for any commercial project today. Different project managers, engineers, surveyors belonging to different organizations and having different needs, goals and each of them looking to maximize their benefits are brought together to form a team. Because of these differences in the individuals the conflicts and disputes become inevitable in a project. Conflicts are generally perceived as a negative term but it has both positive and negative sides. Positive conflicts can be helpful to generate new ideas, make innovations, helps people to ‘Be real’ and creative. But this conflict has to be maintained so that it does not get out of control and bring about dysfunctional consequences. There are large numbers of potential sources that makes conflict inevitable in a project. Some of them are explained below: - (scribd)

It is stated in the paper that disputes are a short term part of an

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