The conflict resolution process can be defined as the informal or formal process that two or more parties use to find a peaceful solution to their dispute.
It’s often the case that when two people or organizations try to resolve a dispute by determining who is right, they get stuck. That’s why so many people need outside help with the conflict resolution process.
When the positions of disputing parties cannot be reconciled, a focus on interests in the conflict resolution process often will lead to a mutually satisfactory outcome. However, a number of common cognitive and emotional traps, many of them unconscious, can exacerbate conflict.
For example, department heads are likely to each think they deserve the lion’s share of the annual budget. Disagreements about what’s fair lead to clashes. Or take the case of two siblings who disagree about whether to sell their deceased parents’ farm, with one of them insisting the land must remain in the family and the other arguing that the parents would want them to sell it.
Sadly, we frequently fall back on the tendency to try to correct the other person or group’s perceptions, lecturing them about why we’re right—and they’re wrong. Deep down, we know that this conflict resolution process usually fails and that there’s a better way.
Thankfully, conflicts can be resolved in a variety of ways, including negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and, if necessary, litigation.
It’s often the case that when two people or organizations try to resolve a dispute by determining who is right, they get stuck. That’s why so many disputes end up in court. There is a better way to resolve your dispute: by hiring an expert mediator who focuses not on rights but on interests—the needs, … Read More
If you work with others, sooner or later you will almost inevitably face the need for conflict resolution. You may need to mediate a dispute between two members of your department. Or you may find yourself angered by something a colleague reportedly said about you in a meeting. Or you may need to engage in … Read More
If you have ever owned a cell phone or been issued a credit card, odds are you’ve signed an arbitration agreement. You also may have signed an arbitration agreement when you started your current job or a past one, whether you remember doing so or not.
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Mediation is often thought of as a last step to adjudicate disputes. In this article, professor Lawrence Susskind spells out the hidden advantages of using mediation early in the process to solve problems and reach voluntary compliance agreements.
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Whether a conflict erupts at work or at home, we frequently fall back on the tendency to try to correct the other person or group’s perceptions, lecturing them about why we’re right—and they’re wrong. Deep down, we know that this conflict management approach usually fails to resolve the conflict and often only makes it worse.
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So, you’re stuck in a serious dispute, but you’re desperate to avoid the hassle and expense of a court case. You’ve heard about alternative dispute resolution but are not sure what it entails.
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The ladder of inference is a model of decision making behavior originally developed by Chris Argyris and Donald Schoen and elaborated upon in the context of negotiation by Program on Negotiation co-founder Bruce Patton in his book Difficult Conversations, co-authored with fellow Program on Negotiation faculty members Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen. The model describes … Read More
In the workplace, misunderstandings, power struggles, and stress can cause conflict to fester and take a toll on productivity. The best organizations put in place conflict management processes and systems to confront conflict directly. Unfortunately, too many organizations fail to do so—and suffer the consequences of sweeping conflict under the rug.
Take the case of Paradigm … Read More