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Analyse and assess the key issues in managing conflict within the workplace, with special regard to the relative decline in indu - Essay Example

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The 21st century has seen the coming up of new technologies that have resulted in rapid changes, as well as increased competition both of which put pressure upon the workforce. This causes stress upon the workforce and in turn increases the eventuality of conflicts and workplace incivility in form of deviant behaviour…
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Analyse and assess the key issues in managing conflict within the workplace, with special regard to the relative decline in indu
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"Analyse and assess the key issues in managing conflict within the workplace, with special regard to the relative decline in indu"

Download file to see previous pages Either of these will be used depending on the scenario at hand, which is a task befalling HR managers, as they must correctly assess the scenario and identify which conflict management style would be effective. From a broader perspective, HR professionals should look to equipping their workforce with not only technical skills but also intercultural and interpersonal skills to enable them deal with the rising pressure (Trudel and Reio 2011, p.395). Conflicts at the workplace are inevitable and need not be feared as non-existence of them indicates unhealthy work relationships. The focus should be on making the conflicts constructive as constructive conflicts are characterized by increased cooperation, stronger relationships, improved outcome quality, being mostly cognitive and separating the person from the problem. Therefore, managers should look to proper handling of conflicts rather than eliminating them all together so as to reap these benefits. The primary tool of handling conflicts is communication, according to the communication systems approach, where conflicts are seen to be a result of failed or poor communication between the conflicting parties. There are elements within communication systems established in an organization, where the elements are the parties communicating, medium being used and messages being sent and/or received. When these elements are interconnected, the communication systems adopted may trigger the process of conflict. Hence, managers are urged to set up proper communication systems to ensure that where conflicts arise, they are constructive (Collins 2008, p.6). Following the communication systems approach, conflicts are viewed as episodes that occur during the process of communication. These episodes come about when the aforementioned elements interconnect and subsequently all the elements affect the conflict process and its outcomes. In addition, according to this approach, the conflict process arises in two contexts- physical and psychological, where the former refers to the attributes of the actual physical environment such as the size of the room, noise in the surrounding area and how furniture is arranged within the room. The latter refers to culture of an organization that determines how communication will take place; both these contexts affect the way in which the sender constructs the message and the way the recipient interprets it (Collins 2008, p.6). Regardless of the approach to be adopted, HR should understand that failure to properly handle conflicts within the workplace increases the level along with frequency of future conflicts. This goes on to affect productivity, job performance and employee learning. Closely linked to conflict management styles is workplace incivility as it is seen to determine the outcome. Workplace incivility refers to individual responses to certain scenarios that are brought about by negative actions. These responses may be counterproductive and as such should be monitored to avoid further escalation and repeat of workplace conflicts. When dealing with conflicts it is important to look into the instigators together with the targets of deviant behaviour; and also consider that deviant behaviour could be a trigger, cause or outcome of workplace conflicts. Additional exchanges as a result of deviant behaviour create a conflict spiral where a conflict will be seen to escalate and possibly spread to ‘ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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