Michelle Billups, Matthew Godwin, Vivilyn Smith and Chandell Tyghter
February 9, 2014
Conflict is inevitable in every type of relationship. Conflict is not positive or negative, it just is; how one handles it is the question. Team A’s paper will focus on the challenges of conflict and ways to manage people while continuing to address the needs of an organization. We will concentrate on the following: communication styles, the barrier conflict, and the negotiation process involved in managing conflict in teams. We will use examples from our Storybook scenarios and real-life examples to explain how to effectively manage conflict as a leader of a team. Storybook 1 When a team member or manager is being vague and trying to spin bad news, the team’s reaction would sometimes show as confused, stressful and discourage. One of our team members experienced many scenarios similar to this storybook. A situation came up when the manager had to deliver some information about the performance of the team compare to another site. For the entire month, the team was not doing well and fell short of the company goals. This was stressful to the team since the team rarely misses any goals. This particular month was different. Although we performed poorly, the team tried its best to influence each other to reach the quota. During the month-end-meeting, it was time to review the team result. The manager seemed very nervous and uncomfortable; it appeared that the manager was not prepared to give the team the bad news. Even thought the team did not meet the goals, the manager indicated that it was a bad month for all of the teams since they did not achieve their goals either. The manager statement caused a major conflict with the other managers. The other managers believe the manager was insulting their hard work. An opportunity was missed to address the problems. We expected the manager to address the issue, and come up with a resolution to prevent the team from missing any more goals. The team did not know what to do after this.
The entire situation could have been handled better. The manager would have needed to give clear information as to be misunderstood. It is important choose the proper communication channels and give enough information. As a manager, I would have sent the team a follow-up email from the meeting giving the opportunity for providing their feedback and ideas on ways of how we could improve the team’s performance. To address the silent team member, managers should give employees a chance to express their views freely beyond meetings. Have one-on-ones with them, which shows the manager is taking an interest. Storybook 2
Breaking news to employees is a very difficult situation. In this storybook, the manager had to break layoff news about the company to the team, and the manager had to let the team know it would not affect them. When a company is having layoffs, as a manager it is better to do them all at once rather than to drag them out if at all possible. Another team member was working in real estate development, and the company began downsizing. The company downsized all one hundred layoffs in a matter of three days. They acted swiftly and got it all accomplished with minimal harm to the organization. The layoffs were handled through oral communication.
This news was beginning to work its way through the company, so it was important to ensure the information was received by the employees fast and accurately to avoid any gossip. They held a companywide meeting with employees addressing issues and to eliminate any gossip. They did this to keep the rumor mill from starting and having employees leave the company because of uncertainty. It is important to address gossip, and ensure information is passed down from the top to the bottom of the organization without any miscommunication. Storybook 3