Health Care Conflict

Decent Essays
Conflict naturally occurs in the health care environment. Conflict, in the right quality and quantity, can produce growth. Conflict in large amounts, or if managed poorly can negatively impact motivation and productivity (Marquis and Huston, 2015). Conflict resolution is critical to a healthy work environment, because a breakdown in communication and collaborations can lead to patient care errors (Johansen, 2012).
I had a conflict with a peer over scheduling. We were both weekend package, working 24-hour shifts. We shared the weekend hours equally by alternating the days we worked. This peer announced at a staff meeting that she wanted to strictly work every Sunday and have me work every Saturday. She said that since she had
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Each of us typically uses only one or two conflict resolution strategies in most situations (Williams, n.d.). As I assess my own comfort level with conflict, I would rate my comfort level with conflict as poor. I typically use avoidance strategies to deal with conflict if the issue is not critical. I believe the reason for this is I value what people think of me, especially if I have an ongoing relationship with them. I do not like it when people are upset or angry with me. I am a generally thought of as a “people pleaser”. Time pressure, issue importance, relationship importance, and the amount of power one person has compared to the other affects which conflict management strategy a person uses (Williams,…show more content…
As a nurse manager, if this problem were presented to me today, I would try to use collaboration to address the issue. Getting both sides to recognize and work toward a common goal is important. Although there are times when this approach may not work due to time constraints or other reasons. My nurse manager also used the strategy of third party consultation. Marquis and Huston (2015) suggest confrontation, third party consultation, behavior change, responsibility charting, structure change, and soothing one party as strategies to manage conflict. This was an effective strategy to use to assure her and the staff nurses that the conflict was being handled appropriately. This would be a good technique for me to utilize, as it would give me reassurance of doing the right thing.
How Conflict Management Relates the Effective Leader
The effective leader needs to recognize conflict early, be proactive, actively listen, remain calm, define the problem, and seek a solution (Johansen, 2012). The conflict I described took several weeks to come to a final solution. The nurse manager handled the situation fairly, however the time it took to resolve the conflict allowed for breakdown in the team morale. Unresolved conflict can lead to poor communication and affect patient outcomes (Marquis & Huston, 2015).
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