Four Types of Conflicts in Organizations - Pollack Peacebuilding Systems

When you get a group of different personalities together for the sake of a common goal, you’re bound to run into a few snafus now and again. Different work styles, goals, and attitudes can make conflict an inevitability in the workplace and if you’re tasked with managing those conflicts or want to exercise your leadership skills, understanding the different types of conflicts in organizations can get you ahead of the game so employee conflict resolution is within reach.

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Type of Conflicts in Organizations

There are different types of conflicts in organizations and understanding them can give you some insight into how to solve them effectively. Here are a few examples:

1. Interpersonal Conflict

When two or more individuals can’t agree on how to reach a common goal, you’re going to experience this type of conflict. Interpersonal conflicts can arise over deadline stress, workplace culture change, or even different work styles and can either remain manageable or flair up to damage team morale quickly.

2. Individual vs. the Group

This type of conflict resolution in the workplace is when more people are involved. In situations where one person disagrees with the working order of a group or team dynamic, things can get a little tricky. Not only can this create a hiccup in productivity among colleagues, it can also include a dispute between a manager and his or her employees. In this case, a manager may utilize disciplinary action which may not create the desired effect in the end. This type of workplace conflict has the capacity to spread quickly through word of mouth and may have big impacts on employee morale, so it’s important to stay ahead of it and act quickly.

3. Interdepartmental Disputes

This list of types of conflicts in organizations takes into account the larger picture of an organization and what comprises it. In other words, within an organization are smaller networks of groups which oftentimes rely on each other or utilize each others’ skills and responsibilities. When there’s a miscommunication, misunderstanding, or all-out conflict between groups, resolution can get a little confusing. Assuming both groups have different managers, it may be critical for each employer to get involved and work collaboratively towards a solution.

4. Inter-organizational Conflict

When the larger organization depends on another organization, there’s still room for disputes to follow. Here there may be an issue of conflicting cultures and group work styles which can impact expectations, work ethic, quantity, and quality. This type of conflict can also include an organization in dispute with a union that represents its employees. In these situations, it may be more likely that more official forms of conflict resolution are needed, which may or may not include legal representation.

Dealing with conflict in the workplace can be stressful, and if you’re the boss, taking steps to improve effective communication in the workplace can be one preemptive step in reducing future conflict under your watch. But if you’ve already got a conflict on your hands, quick employee conflict resolution is critical so that tensions don’t build and the work doesn’t stop.

If you’re currently facing one of these types of conflicts in organizations and need some neutral support with resolving it, contact Pollack Peacebuilding Solutions today to get the right guidance tailored to your needs!

types of conflict in organizations

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