The article selected for the critical thinking analysis on conflict management is titled How to Manage Conflict Posted by Hedges Kristi on the Forbes website. The article articulates that conflicts are inevitable in any organization, However, good it may be, and irrespective of the conflict resolution systems put in place. Thus, the author proposes that an effective leader is one who is able to deal with conflict whenever they arise, Such a leader maintains trust and generates confidence among the employees (Hedges Kristi, How to manage conflict).
It is thus imperative not only for leaders but also for employees of an organization to learn how to manage conflict. The key question the author is addressing is how to go about conflict resolution. The prerequisite of conflict management understands the nature of conflict, From this step, a leader can then decide on the appropriate style to handle it. The author is keen to point out five styles that different people use in conflict management namely: competing, accommodating, avoiding, collaborating, and compromising.
While each individual has a natural tendency of handling conflicts, the task of conflict management becomes challenging as one assumes a leadership role in an organization. Conflict resolution from a leader’s perspective requires that he/she abandon the style that he/she favors from time to time for a more flexible approach (Hedges Kristi, How to manage conflict.). The most important information in this article is that early intervention in a conflict leads to faster an effective resolution. It is always easier to solve a small problem as opposed to a bigger one.
This is the case with interpersonal conflicts in the workplace. Such conflicts never disappear by turning a blind eye on them; they need to be ironed out conclusively.
The main inference in this article is that while a majority of employees in any organization would not enjoy being in a situation of conflict, there are those who truly do making it inevitable. People in the organization must always be ready to handle and resolve the conflict. A prudent leader is one who does some kind of prep work to this end by put in place solid conflict management procedures to deal with them when they arise because they are inevitable. The key idea that this article points out is that conflicts and priorities are mutually exclusive. This means that in any conflict there are priorities to be evaluated. Such priorities include the goals of the organization, individual goals, and relationships in the organization so that the conflict management style favors the priority that outweighs the rest.
To successfully resolve a conflict, leaders must maintain the focus on the problem rather than the people involved in the conflict. The aim of any conflict management is getting a common ground to solve the problem. Organization members must have in mind they are a team working towards a common goal thus resolving a conflict is important in moving forward with organizational goals (Hedges Kristi, How to manage conﬂict). The main assumption underlying the author‘s thinking is that effective communication is essential in conflict management. She uses the 2014 Workfront State of Enterprise Report to back her assumption, as the report pointed out that miscommunication in the workplace is the main cause of conflict.
Organizations must break the barriers to communication so that leaders are aware of any disturbing issue before conflict arises. Rumors or assumptions need to be investigated before they are brought forth as they are likely causes of conflicts. If organizations employ the author’s reasoning, they will be better prepared to resolve conflicts through early interventions and on a priority based. Moreover, they will find in necessary to have good communication channels to support conflict resolution. Failure to use the author’s ideas means that the organization will have recurrent conflict issues they would otherwise have resolved with good preparations. Therefore, conflict management preparations are critical for all leaders in the organization.