Definition

Because conflict is often pervasive in team and interorganizational relationships, the manner in which people resolve conflict has implication on team and organizational performance (Behfar, Peterson, Mannix, & Trochim, 2008; De Dreu & Weingart, 2003). Conflict can emerge with regard to tasks or cognitions (i.e., disagreement over differences in ideas, viewpoints, and opinions pertaining to the group’s tasks), relationships (i.e., disagreement resulting from interpersonal incompatibilities), and processes (i.e., conflict about dividing and delegating responsibility and deciding how to get work done) (Behfar et al., 2008). Whereas conflict can be resolved with destructive techniques (e.g., domination, confrontation), these techniques have a negative effect on team and organizational performance (Mohr & Spekman, 1994). The competence of conflict resolution therefore refers to finding peaceful solutions to disagreement among two or more parties through constructive techniques (e.g., joint problem solving, persuasion), which have a positive effect on organizational performance (Mohr & Spekman, 1994).

This competence can be assessed according to the following three students’ mastery levels:

Introductory level

Avoids difficult conversations; does not listen nor empathise with others; tries to find guiltiness; is not focused on the outcome; takes comments as personal attacks; is not able to negotiate; privileges competition and win-lose outcomes.

Intermediate level

Stands but cannot completely manage difficult conversations; listens others but does not always empathise; is partially focused on the outcome; rarely takes comments as personal attacks; tries to negotiate; promotes win-win outcomes when participants adhere.

Advanced level

Uses assertiveness in initiating difficult conversations; listens in an objective, empathic way; avoids the blame game; is focused on the outcome; does not take comments as personal attacks; is able to negotiate; promotes win-win outcomes.


Tools for Assessment

On the right you will find the assessment tools that can be used to measure this competence.

Click on the tool name to access the tool.