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Resolving Interpersonal Conflict


Resolving Interpersonal Conflict Conflict an expressed struggle between at least two people who perceive the situation differently and are experiencing interference ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Resolving Interpersonal Conflict

Resolving Interpersonal Conflict
  • Conflictan expressed struggle between at least
    two people who perceive the situation differently
    and are experiencing interference from the other
    person in achieving their goals.

Causes of Conflict
  • Control over resources
  • Preferences and Nuisances
  • Values
  • Beliefs
  • Goals
  • The nature of the relationship between the

Positive Effects of Conflict
  • Promotes Growth in an Relationship
  • Allows for Healthy Release of Feelings
  • Increases Motivation and Self-Esteem

Negative Effects of Conflict
  • The Manner in Which We Approach Interpersonal
  • Larger Problems and Deeper Personal Resentments
    May Occur

In Conflict
  • Conflict involves Self (my feelings), Other
    Person (his/her feelings) and the Issue (what the
    conflict is about)
  • The Placatertakes the self out of the conflict
    to please the other
  • The Blamertakes the other out of the conflict to
    find blame or fault
  • The Computertakes both self and other out of
    conflict and only focuses on facts
  • The Distracteravoids self, other and issue

Dealing with the Emotional Dimension of Conflict
  • First and foremost, remember that the emotions
    have priority over any issue
  • Treat the other person with respect (facial
    expressions, empathic listening, tone of voice,
    words and emphasis)
  • Listen until you experience the other side
    (remember our empathic listening exercise?)
  • State your views, needs and feelings clearly and

Conflict Management Styles
  • Passive
  • Aggressive
  • Passive-aggressive
  • Assertive

Passive Style
  • Responds to conflict by avoidance
  • Communication does not appreciate ones own
    feelings or thoughts (and is, therefore,
  • Has a belief that we should never make anyone
    uncomfortable or displeased
  • Avoids rejection
  • Stores up anger and resentment
  • When neither the goal nor the relationship is
    very important, this may be a good style to employ

Aggressive Style
  • Responds to conflict by a fight and domination
  • Go on verbal attack (the best defense is a good
  • Characterized by loud, abusive, rude and
    sarcastic behaviors
  • Believes that I have to put others down in order
    to protect myself
  • Aggressive people appear to be in control
  • Others tend to avoid aggressive people because of
    the effects of humiliation, resentment, etc.
  • When the goal is important and the relationship
    is considerably less important, this may be useful

  • Appears passive and agreeable
  • Uses subtle, underhanded aggression or behind
    the back behaviors
  • Sarcasm is one of the ways that the aggression
    plays outif I can appear as if Im just having
    fun and yet, make you feel put down, I win.

  • Responds to conflict by using cooperative problem
  • Presents ones honest feelings and thoughts and
    appreciates the honest feelings and thoughts of
  • Recognizes that both parties may be right and
  • I respect myself and have equal respect for
    othersIm myself and you can be yourself
  • You can exercise your freedom without guilt
  • Leads to more open, honest and direct

Learning to be Assertive
  • Basic Assertionlearning to stand up for your
    rights or express your feelings
  • Learning to express positive feelingslearning to
    give compliments
  • Learning to be assertive when people fail to
    respond to your request
  • Learning to use the I message

I Messages
  • Contains four parts
  • An objective, nonjudgmental description of the
    persons behavior in specific terms
  • How I feel about this
  • The concrete effects on me
  • A request and an invitation to respond

Delivering I Messages
  • Write and practice your message before delivering
  • Develop assertive body language with your I
  • Dont be sidetracked by the defensiveness or
    manipulation of others

Albert Einstein
  • Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be
    achieved by understanding.

Saying No
  • Start smallpractice saying no when there is
    little at stake
  • Keep it simpleyou do not have to offer long
    explanations as to why you are saying no
  • Buy timegive yourself some distance between the
    invitation/request and your response
  • Remain generousplace another invitation or offer
    within the no
  • Understand your Yesknowing what you want to
    say yes to will make the no easier

Culture and Conflict Management
  • High-Context Culturesvalue self-restraint, avoid
    confrontation, rely heavily on non-verbalspreserv
    ing the face of the other person is the goal
    (Japanese, Chinese, Asian and Latin American
  • Low-Context Culturesuse more explicit language,
    more direct meanings, stress goals and outcomes
    over relationships (German, Swedish, American and
    English cultures)

Methods of Conflict Resolution
  • Win-Loseone person gets his or her way and the
    other does not
  • Lose-Loseneither person gets his or her way
  • Win-Winboth win because the solution must be
    acceptable to both

Steps for Win-Win Conflict Resolution
  • Define the problem in terms of needs, not
  • Share your problem and unmet needs
  • Listen to the other persons needs
  • Brainstorm possible solutions
  • Evaluate the possible solutions and choose the
    best one
  • Implement the solution
  • Evaluate the solution at a later date

When Conflicts Cannot be Resolved
  • Differences in Basic Beliefs, Values, and Past
  • Struggles Where there is No Solution
  • Situations Out of Our Control
  • When Things Have to Be a Certain Way