Conflict Among Teams

1248 Words5 Pages
Conflict Among Teams
Michelle Thornhill
GEN 300
Diane Ellison
October 9, 2006
Conflict Among Teams

Differences of opinion exist in every organization and in every work group. Among the many factors which influence differences of opinion are the personal philosophy and values, differing strategies, and varying sources of information. A variety of opinions are beneficial to a team, causing team members to think about new and different ideas or to change old patterns into new ones. Differences of opinion do not cause conflicts. Misunderstanding does. Misunderstanding usually arises from miscommunication, by keeping hostilities "inside," misinterpreting what someone said, not acknowledging another 's right to a different opinion,
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There are two options when teams are allowed to make their own decisions, without a mediator: voting and consensus (What to do about conflicts, 1995). Voting, although quicker, can promote division within the team. A consensus takes a bit of time to carry out, but everyone supports the final decision in the end.
Conflict resolution is most difficult when the dispute involves incompatibly opposing views from which neither side will budge. Pitting one person 's word against another 's has the potential to escalate a conflict and make resolution impossible. Two people may view an event from entirely different angles, with each unshakably believing their own view to be correct. What is important is that the incident be put to rest. Unless there is irrefutable reason to believe which side is telling the truth, both sides must be given the benefit of the doubt. In most conflicts of this nature, the truth resides somewhere between the opposing views. Sometimes the best course of action is simply to bring the two people together and have them shake hands. This symbolic gesture often works well. Though the parties may only grudgingly participate, if they agree to leave the past behind and start anew, a healing seed will have already been planted.
Conflict, though it can be a hindrance, is essential to effective teamwork, because it is a natural part
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