Chapter 13

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Management (MGH)
Joanna Heathcote

CHAPTER 13 CONFLICT AND STRESS WHAT IS CONFLICT? o INTERPERSONAL CONFLICT The process that occurs when one person, group or organizational subunit frustrates the goal attainment of another Involves antagonistic attitudes and behaviours CAUSES OF ORGANIZATIONAL CONFLICT o GROUP IDENTIFICATION AND INTERGROUP BIAS Jane Elliot o INTERDEPENDENCE when individuals or subunits are mutually dependent on each other to accomplish their own goals, the potential for conflict exists It necessitates interaction between the parties so that they can coordinate their interests Interdependence implies that each party has some power over the other Not always the case, sometime it can lead to very productive relationships o DIFFERENCES IN POWER, STATUS AND CULTURE Power if dependence is not mutual then antagonism might develop Status Status differences provide little impetus for conflict when people of lower status are dependent on those of higher status. Sometimes lower rank people can direct the actions of higher status people and that can cause conflict Culture When two or more very different cultures develop in a organization, the clash of beliefs and values can result in overt conflict o AMBIGUITY Ambiguous situations, goals, jurisdictions or performance criteria can lead to conflict o SCARCE RESOURCES Power jockeying occurs when there are scarce resources The first thing that should be done when encountering this problem is to try to increase the resources so everybody has what they would need TYPES OF CONFLICT o Relationship conflict Interpersonal tensions among individuals that have to do with their relationship per se, not the task at hand o Task conflict Disagreements about the nature of the work to be done o Process conflict Disagreements about how work should be organized and accomplished CONFLICT DYNAMICS o Winning becomes more important than developing a good solution to the problem at hand o The parties begin to conceal information from each other or to pass on distorted information o Each side becomes more cohesive, deviants are punished
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