Discussion Question on Moods and Emotions

Essentials of Organizational Behavior

Fourteenth Edition

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Chapter 14

Conflict and Negotiation

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

After studying this chapter you should be able to:

Describe the three types of conflict and the three loci of conflict.

Outline the conflict process.

Contrast distributive and integrative bargaining.

Apply the five steps of the negotiation process.

Show how individual differences influence negotiations.

Describe the social factors that influence negotiations.

Assess the roles and functions of third-party negotations.

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Definition of Conflict

Conflict: Process that begins when one party perceives that another party has negatively affected, or is about to negatively affect, something that the first party cares about

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Conflict primarily deals with perception. If nobody thinks there is conflict, then no conflict exists. Conflict can be experienced in an organization through many different avenues. It can be that the goals of the individuals are incompatible or there is a difference of opinion over the interpretation of facts. Many conflicts also arise through disagreements about how people should behave.

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Perspectives of Conflict

Functional conflict:

Supports the goals of the group and improves its performance

Dysfunctional conflict:

Hinders group performance

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Contemporary perspectives differentiate types of conflict based on their effects.

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Effect of Levels of Conflict

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This exhibit shows the effect of levels of conflict.

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Types of Conflict

Three categories of conflict:

Task conflict:

Work content and goals

Relationship conflict: Interpersonal relationships

Process conflict:

How the work is done

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You can assess the focus of conflict by looking at either task, relationship, or process.

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Desired Conflict Levels

Source of Conflict Blank Level of Conflict Blank
Blank Low Moderate High
Task Functional Blank Dysfunctional
Relationship Blank Dysfunctional Blank
Process Functional Dysfunctional Blank

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Task conflict arises when there is conflict over the content and/or goals of the work. If this type of conflict exists at low to moderate levels, then this is a functional conflict that can help individuals seek clarification or new ideas on how to accomplish their goals.

 

Relationship conflict is based on problems between individuals and is almost always dysfunctional.

 

Process conflict occurs when there is disagreement on how the work gets done. Low levels of process conflict represent functional conflict.

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Loci of Conflict

Three sources of conflict:

Dyadic conflict:

Conflict between two people

Intragroup conflict:

Conflict occurring within a group or team

Intergroup conflict:

Conflict between groups or teams

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Another way to understand conflict is to consider where it occurs – its locus.

 

In sum, the traditional view that all conflict should be eliminated is short-sighted. The interactionist view that conflict can stimulate active discussion without spilling over into negative, disruptive emotions is incomplete. Thinking about conflict in terms of type and locus helps us realize that conflict is probably inevitable in most organizations. Therefore, it’s important to manage the variables of the conflict process.

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The Conflict Process

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The conflict process is outlined above; in the following slides, we will look at each step individually.

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Stage I: Potential Opposition

Communication

Barriers exist

Too much or too little

Structure

Group size, age, diversity

Organizational rewards, goals, group dependency

Personal Variables

Personality types

Emotionality

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Stage I of the conflict process is potential opposition or incompatibility. In this stage there are three main conditions that can cause conflict to arise. They are communication, structure, and personal variables. Communication may cause conflict when words mean different things to different people and misunderstandings result. Communication can be functional to a point, but when too much communication is given, it can cause frustrations and sometimes there are barriers in place to effectively hear what is being communicated.

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Stage II: Cognition and Personalization

Potential for conflict is actualized

Parties “make sense” of conflict by defining it and its potential solutions

Emotions play a major role in shaping perceptions

Perceived conflict: awareness needed for actualization

Felt conflict: emotional involvement – parties experience anxiety, tension, frustration, or hostility

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Stage II looks at the recognition or cognition of the conflict and the personalization or the emotional part of the conflict. As stated earlier, in order for conflict to be present there must be an awareness of its existence, defined as perceived conflict. Once people are aware of the conflict, emotions are expressed that can impact the outcome of the conflict; this is defined as felt conflict. Emotions can include anxiety, tension, frustration, or hostility.

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Stage III: Intentions (1 of 2)

Intentions:

Decisions to act in a given way

Inferred (often erroneous) intentions may cause greater conflict

Five conflict handling intentions:

Competing

Collaborating

Avoiding

Accommodating

Compromising

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Stage III starts to look at the intentions of the individuals involved. These intentions include the determination to act in a certain way, but it is important to realize behavior does not always accurately reflect intention. Sometimes people act out of emotion and not rational thinking.

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Stage III: Intentions (2 of 2)

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Using two dimensions – cooperativeness (the degree to which one party attempts to satisfy the other party’s concerns) and assertiveness (the degree to which one party attempts to satisfy her own concerns) – we can identify five conflict handling intentions: competing (assertive and uncooperative); collaborating (assertive and cooperative); avoiding (unassertive and uncooperative); accommodating (unassertive and cooperative); and compromising (midrange on both assertiveness and cooperativeness).

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Stage IV: Behavior

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Stage IV moves us beyond intentions to the chosen behavior in the conflict. This is when conflict becomes visible. Usually each party is using overt attempts to implement their own intentions.

 

This step may cause a reaction in others, either because the individual miscalculated someone’s intentions or he or she was not skilled in translating his or her intentions into behavior. This can cause functional conflicts that may be helpful, or dysfunction conflicts that can be highly destructive.

Functional conflicts are usually at the lower range of the continuum, while conflicts that reach the upper range of the continuum are almost always dysfunctional.

 

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Stage V: Outcomes

Functional Outcomes:

Improves decision quality

Stimulates creativity and innovation

Encourages interest and curiosity

Problems are aired

Accepts change and self-evaluation

Dysfunctional Outcomes:

Group is less effective

Reduces cohesiveness and communications

Leads to the destruction of the group

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Stage V looks at the outcomes of conflict resolution. Functional outcomes include increasing group performance, encouraging interest and curiosity, and creating an environment for self-evaluation and change. Dysfunctional outcomes include discontented workers, reduced group cohesiveness, and infighting. In order to create functional conflict, it is important to reward dissent and punish conflict avoiders.

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Managing Conflict

Minimize counterproductive conflict:

Recognize when there really is a disagreement

Encourage open, frank discussion focused on interests

Have opposing groups pick important issues and work for mutual satisfaction

Emphasize shared interests

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If managers recognize that in some situations conflict can be beneficial, they can encourage people to challenge the system and develop fresh ideas.

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Cultural Influences

Culture influences conflict resolution strategies

Collectivist cultures try to use indirect methods to preserve relationships

Promote the good of the group as a whole

Individualist cultures confront differences of opinion directly and openly

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There are numerous global implications in the area of conflict as different cultures will view conflict through unique lenses. For example, U.S. managers are more likely to use competing tactics whereas Japanese managers will tend toward compromise and avoidance.

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Negotiation

Negotiation: Process that occurs when two or more parties decide how to allocate scarce resources

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Negotiation or bargaining is the process where the people involved work on creating a deal that is mutually beneficial.

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Bargaining Strategies

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There are two main approaches – distributive and integrative. Distributive bargaining seeks to divide up a fixed amount of resources and often creates a win/lose situation. Integrative bargaining seeks one or more settlements that can create a win-win situation for all parties involved.

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Distributive Bargaining

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This exhibit depicts distributive bargaining. Each negotiator has a target point that defines his goals and a resistance point that marks the lowest acceptable outcome. The area between these points is the settlement range in which both parties’ goals can be met.

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Integrative Bargaining

Integrative bargaining:

A win-win solution is possible

But:

Parties must be open with information and candid about their concerns

Both parties must be sensitive regarding the other’s needs

Parties must be able to trust each other

Both parties must be willing to be flexible

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In order for integrative bargaining to be successful, parties must be open with information and candid about their concerns. In addition, both parties must work to pay attention to the needs of the others involved. This all needs to happen so trust occurs. In the process both parties must be willing to be flexible in working toward a solution.

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The Negotiation Process

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The negotiation process is best understood through the negotiation process. The grid in this slide outlines the steps: Preparation and planning, definition of ground rules, clarification and justification, bargaining and problem solving, and closure and implementation. You should determine your BATNA and that of the other party before proceeding with negotiations. BATNA represents the Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement or the lowest acceptable value you will take for a negotiated agreement. Then anything above your BATNA is a good negotiated outcome.

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Individual Differences in Negotiation Effectiveness

Personality Traits

Little evidence to support

Disagreeable introvert is best

Moods & Emotions

Showing anger helps in distributive negotiations

Positive moods help integrative negotiations

Culture

Negotiating styles vary across national cultures

Gender Differences

Men are slightly better

Many stereotypes – low power positions

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Many individual differences are interwoven in the negotiation process and impact the effectiveness of the outcomes. Personality traits will impact outcomes as extroverts tend to be weaker at negotiation because they will want people to like them. Intelligence is not an indicator of effective negotiation skills.

 

Mood and emotion can impact negotiations as anger is often an effective tool in distributive bargaining, whereas positive moods are helpful in integrative bargaining situations.

 

Culture also plays a role in negotiations and the styles utilized. American negotiators will often make the first offer where Japanese negotiators will often wait. North Americans use facts to persuade, Arabs use emotions, and Russians speak more in ideals. Brazilians tend to say no when negotiating much more than Americans or Japanese negotiators will do so.

 

Gender can also impact negotiation effectiveness. Men and women tend to approach negotiations in the same way but may view the outcomes differently. Women may appear more tender in the process where men come across as tough. On the average, men are more likely to be negotiators than women.

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Negotiating in a Social Context

Reputation

Trustworthiness

Competence and integrity

Relationships

What is best for the relationship as a whole

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To really understand negotiations in practice, we have to consider the social factors of reputation and relationships.

 

Have a reputation for being trustworthy matters in negotiations. What characteristics help a person develop a trustworthy reputation? A combination of competence and integrity.

 

The social, interpersonal component of relationships with repeated negotiations means that individuals go beyond valuing what is simply good for themselves and instead start to think about what is best for the other party and the relationship as a whole.

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Third-Party Negotiations

Basic third party roles:

Mediator: neutral third party who facilitates a negotiated solution by using reasoning, persuasion, and suggestions for alternatives

Arbitrator: third party to a negotiation who has the authority to dictate an agreement

Conciliator: trusted third party who provides an informal communication link between the negotiator and the opponent

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When it’s impossible to reach an agreement through direct negotiations, it may be necessary to turn to a third party to help find a solution. There are three basic third-party roles: mediator, arbitrator, and conciliator.

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Implications for Managers

Choose an authoritarian management style in some situations.

Seek integrative solutions in some situations.

Build trust.

Consider compromise.

Consider the tradeoffs between distributive and integrative bargaining.

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Choose an authoritarian management style:

In emergencies

When unpopular actions need to be implemented

When the issue is vital to the organization’s welfare

Seek integrative solutions:

When your objective is to learn

When you want to merge insights from people with different perspectives

When you need to gain commitment by incorporating concerns into a consensus

When you need to work through feelings that have interfered with a relationship

Build trust by accommodating others:

When you find you’re wrong

When you need to demonstrate reasonableness

When other positions need to be heard

When issues are more important to others than to yourself

When you want to satisfy others and maintain cooperation

When you can build social credits for later issues

To minimize loss when you are outmatched and losing

When employees should learn from their mistakes

Consider compromising when:

Goals are important but not worth potential disruption

Opponents with equal power are committed to mutually exclusive goals

You need temporary settlements to complex issues

Distributive bargaining can resolve disputes, but it often reduces the satisfaction of one or more negotiators because it’s confrontational and focused on the short term. Integrative bargaining tends to provide outcomes that satisfy all parties and build lasting relationships.

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Copyright

Copyright © 2018, 2016, 2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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