December 11th, 2013
LS 337 Conflict Resolution
The conflict that I would like to discuss for my final project is one between a supervisor and myself. This conflict has been ongoing and has had multiple incidents and I don't know if it will ever be finished. I looked to this supervisor as a mentor early in my career and still do in some aspects because he is very knowledgeable in my occupation. However there have been false accusations made by him about me as well as many incidents that have left an angry feeling inside of me. Sometimes I feel that he is giving me advice and being a tough father figure however I feel there has been a power struggle with him because of my extreme amount of initiative that I show at work. This conflict is still ongoing and I feel that I have many words to say to him that have gone silent because I know better. In this paper I will discuss the history of the conflict, actors involved, conflict prevention, escalation, peacemaking attempts, Ingredients of Conflict, Skills Engaged, Models, Evaluation and conclusion.
History of the Conflict
This conflict between a supervisor (Lt. Tim) and me started approximately six months ago after I had made a post on Facebook. This post ultimately gave me a negative task record even though it had no mention of the organization that I belong to. I was addressing people of my same profession by quoting a fellow co-worker. The quote stated “you can’t get good a this job by cleaning the shitters all day.” My interpretation and message was to get out and do training. This misguided quote unfortunately led to a conflict that ensued because of its social reach and its openness for interpretation. Lt. Tim brought me into his office and proceeded to tare into me about this quote. I was given no chance to explain myself and still have resentment over this issue.
The second incident occurred when I was to relieve Lt. Tim from work one morning. I had been running late and called the firehouse at 7:30 am to advise that I might be late which is customary practice. I arrived exactly at 8:00 am and received a verbal lashing from Lt. Tim about my behavior. I did not expect this at all as I had called in and thought everything was ok. This conflict was escalated when Lt. Tim began to spread rumors that I had come in late to work without giving the facts of what happened.
The third conflict occurred during another shift change when Lt. Tim questioned my decision on responding to a call. This incident is described in detail in the peacemaking attempt section.
Myself as described in this paper is a young and eager to learn firefighter paramedic who had just passed the acting lieutenants exam. I am a person that takes strong initiative towards projects. I work hard to make my organization and myself better. Sometimes this initiative and drive can be overwhelming to others because they are not used to it. I have faced resistance from others before for being too aggressive with things.
Lt. Tim is a promoted officer who was not my direct supervisor but because of the smaller size of the organization, I see and interact with this person on a somewhat regular basis. This person is highly respected in the organization because of his depth and knowledge in firefighting and technical rescue. Lt. Tim has a strong personality and has been called moody by others. He can be very straight forward with things and I somewhat admire his honesty and frankness. Unfortunately I have crossed paths with him and have gotten on his bad side.
As far as prevention goes in this series of conflicts, I believe it could have been accomplished in one of two ways. I could of not messed up in the first place. This ultimately would have helped me keep his respect from him, as well as not loose my respect for Lt. Tim after how he treated me. Unfortunately we are humans and make