Five Factor Model Of Interpersonal Conflict

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A multitude of studies have been conducted to figure out the optimal styles to handle conflicts. The previous papers have mentioned the two-three-four-five factor model of conflict resolution. It was not until 1940 that the first five-factor model of conflict management was conceptualised by Follet with three primary methods namely domination, compromise, and integration, as well as secondary ones avoidance and suppression (as cited in "Learning material on interpersonal conflict: Rahim’s model", n.d.). Concurring with Follet were Blake and Mouton (1964) conceiving the scheme into forcing, withdrawing, smoothing, compromising, and problem solving on the basis of concern for people and concern for production (as cited in "Learning material …show more content…

Adapted from Rahim, A., & Bonoma, T. V. (1979). Managing organizational conflict: A model diagnosis and intervention. Psychological Reports, 44, 1327, as cited in "Learning material on interpersonal conflict: Rahim’s model" (n.d.)

The Integrating Style is defined by Rahim and Bonoma (1979) as a Problem-Solving method with high concern for self and others (as cited in "Learning material on interpersonal conflict: Rahim’s model", n.d.). It is required that all of the entities collaborate with each other to reach a mutual agreement via explicit conversation (confrontation to explore the root causes of conflicts), mutual understanding and positive contributions.
According to Rahim and Bonoma (1979), the Obliging Style (or Accommodating) is associated with low concern for self and high concern for others (as cited in "Learning material on interpersonal conflict: Rahim’s model", n.d.). Therefore, the sacrifice of personal needs from one party to adapt to the other’s needs will be likely to be observed. There will usually be no confrontation to find out the source of conflicts and seek the best solution for both members. The obliging person is seen to be selfless and lenient and easily adjustable to the other’s wishes without showing …show more content…

In a give-and-take situation like this, each party will sympathise with each other and sacrifice a bit of their interest to accommodate to others’ needs and to come to a final mutual consent. It is necessary to have open communication to find the middle ground for the problem. It is the consolidation of the best element of all of the aforementioned methods.
The table below is a comprehensive summary of all characteristics of the five conflict management styles by Rahim and Bonoma (1979).

Table 2: Characteristics of Conflict Management Styles (Pološki Vokić, N., 2009)
Style Characteristics
Avoiding • Low concern for self and low concern for others; unassertive and uncooperative personality
• Lose-lose outcome (because both parties refrain from communicating their needs, so neither has any needs met)
• The desire to withdraw from the conflict situation or suppress the conflict
• Withdrawal behaviour, postponement, disengagement from conflict, hiding disagreement, sidestepping
• The likely outcome is that the conflict remains unresolved
• Might take the form of diplomatically sidestepping an issue, postponing an issue until a later or better time, or, ostrich-like, simply withdrawing from a threatening situation

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