OBch14 - Robbins Organizational Behavior Chapter Fourteen...

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Robbins: Organizational Behavior Chapter Fourteen CONFLICT AND NEGOTIATION LEARNING OBJECTIVES After studying this chapter, students should be able to: 1. Define conflict. 2. Differentiate between the traditional, human relations, and interactionist views of conflict. 3. Contrast task, relationship, and process conflict. 4. Outline the conflict process. 5. Describe the five conflict-handling intentions. 6. Contrast distributive and integrative bargaining. 7. Identify the five steps in the negotiation process. 8. Describe cultural differences in negotiations. CHAPTER OVERVIEW Many people automatically assume that conflict is related to lower group and organizational performance. This chapter has demonstrated that this assumption is frequently incorrect. Conflict can be either constructive or destructive to the functioning of a group or unit. As shown in Exhibit 14-8, levels of conflict can be either too high or too low. Either extreme hinders performance. An optimal level is where there is enough conflict to prevent stagnation, stimulate creativity, allow tensions to be released, and initiate the seeds for change, yet not so much as to be disruptive or deter coordination of activities. Inadequate or excessive levels of conflict can hinder the effectiveness of a group or an organization, resulting in reduced satisfaction of group members, increased absence and turnover rates, and, eventually, lower productivity. On the other hand, when conflict is at an optimal level, complacency and apathy should be minimized, motivation should be enhanced through the creation of a challenging and questioning environment with a vitality that makes work interesting, and there should be the amount of turnover needed to rid the organization of misfits and poor performers. What advice can we give managers faced with excessive conflict and the need to reduce it? Do not assume there is one conflict-handling intention that will always be best! You should select an intention appropriate for the situation. The following provides some guidelines: Use competition when quick, decisive action is vital (in emergencies); on important issues, where unpopular actions need implementing (in cost cutting, enforcing unpopular rules, discipline); on issues vital to the organization’s welfare when you know you are right; and against people who take advantage of noncompetitive behavior. Use collaboration to find an integrative solution when both sets of concerns are too important to be compromised; when your objective is to learn; to merge insights from people with different perspectives; to gain commitment by incorporating concerns into a consensus; and to work through feelings that have interfered with a relationship. Use avoidance when an issue is trivial, or more important issues are pressing; when you perceive no chance
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OBch14 - Robbins Organizational Behavior Chapter Fourteen...

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