Identify a situation in which you effectively managed conflict and another situation in which your conflict management was ineffective. Then use the Johari window, MBTI, TA or DISC to analyse and reflect and on each of these scenarios.
To complete the report, you also need to reflect on your strengths and weaknesses and what you learned about yourself as a person. Report on how you could apply your learning’s to improve conflict management in a diverse organisation. You can identify in your reflection the tools that helped most to identify your areas of concern and what you have learned about yourself.
It might be useful in choosing the best model to examine the conflict
situation and the way in which it was resolved and how the outcome
could have been different by use of the JOHARI window, Disc etc.
- You can decide if you wish to write on one conflict and use several models in your reflective discussion on how these tools helped identify your areas of concern and what you have learned about yourself during the process. Or
- Use several conflicts and incorporate the use of several models in discussion.
- You could incorporate one or more models and use different aspects of the model in your reflection depending on the conflict situation that you face
Use of Johari Window, MBTI, TA or DISC to Analyse and Reflect on Personal Conflict Management Scenarios
Conflict is a common phenomenon in any organization; especially in organizations were teamwork is the order of the day. Conflicts are thus hard to avoid though it is possible to manage conflicts when their traits are recognized on time. Conflict is an essential part of human life and it refers to an outcome of actions or behaviors. Conflict denotes expression of rivalry, hostility, misunderstanding, negative attitude, aggression, and antagonism. It is also related to the situations which encompass opposing interest between two contrasting.
It can be described as a disagreement among groups or individuals with other group or individual trying to get acceptance of their views against others. Anytime there is an interaction, there is a high possibility of conflict (Thakore, 2013, p.7). It is thus important for an individual to be well aware of the measures to take to resolve conflicts before they interfere with organization operation. This paper focuses on the use of Johari window two reflect on two cases of conflict management, where in the first case the conflict was effectively solve and in the second case the conflict was not effectively solved.
The situation occurred in a team I was leading whose members had been randomly selected for different department and where their qualifications were used in assignment of duties. The conflict occurred when two members working in partnership in the project were always late with their work and mostly presented incomplete work. I summoned them to determine what was going on, only to find out that the two parties were always in fights and disagreements. They both seemed to disagree about small issues and fight too much about them.
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I thought this was happening because they did not understand each other. However, I realized that the two came from the same department and hence they knew enough about each other. It appeared like they were in a competition to bring each other down for unknown reasons. While talking to them, I realized that each had a negative opinion about the other, which the other did not know about. This made it hard for them to work together. I thus decided to split their work where each would complete different part of the task and I would compile it upon presentation. When this was done, each one of them was able to present perfect work before time. This demonstrated that my method worked effectively in resolving the conflict.
Johari window is a useful and simple tool for personality development, self-awareness training, group dynamics, interpersonal communication, intergroup relations and team development. It provided a chance to perceive how we see ourselves and how we are seen by others. Johari window offers four planes which include open area, hidden area, blind area and unknown area (Saxena, 2015, p. 135). This section analyzed how the conflict was resolved and how it could have been resolved better by use of Johari window.
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Open area refers to what one knows about him or herself and what other knows about him or her. Open area is very important while selecting a team since it would be easy to identify who one can work with who one cannot. The introduction bit in the above referred team was meant to increase the open area. With this information, I was able to define duties to all team members. The two members in conflict seemed to know more about each other, than we all other did. This made it hard for me to realize that they had some deep rooted differences which could not have allowed them to work together. Lack of enough information about my team members or inability to know more about them made me make a mistake of putting the two together without considering possibility of serious conflicts.
The two conflicting parties knew too much about each other, including weaknesses and strength of the other party, which the other party was not aware of. Each tried to maximize on provoking the other’s weakness to ensure that they never succeeded in doing anything together. This fueled the conflict even further. In my opinion, the two were in competition of a position and they feared working together and succeeding together would have made one credited based on the effort of the other party. This made each of them employ all possible energy to destroy the other party, resulting to chaos. This situation could have been avoided if I had investigated further on their characters and gathered more information about each one of them from their immediate colleagues.
Each of the two parties seemed to have a blind area which they were to utilize to win in their professional life. When separated, they both demonstrated high level of competency and provided high quality work. Each party seems to know of her potential which is not known by the other, especially when they were required to proof their ability. Separating them provoked their desire to show the unknown part of them. Their ability to work effectively with high level of professionalism was quite a surprise to all of us.
Every individual has got a part of self which is not known to anyone. This part can be known by pushing further. To proof their ability and to ensure they were maintained as part of the main team, the conflicting party did their best to demonstrate individual ability. In my opinion pushing further could have demonstrated their exceptional ability. In an effort to win in their professional goal, two parties could have managed to work together and maybe surprised even themselves, if they considered pushing for it. However, this can only be a personal decision. As a team leader, forcing them to remain together could have worsened the situation.
The success of the applied strategy in conflict management was due to the team leader ability to learn the involved parties and to identify both their open area and hidden area. By so doing, the team leader was able to know that the two were in a professional war, each with a fear of improving the image of the other during the team work. They consequently worked to destroy their team result, creating a negative image for both. Having realized this, the team leader solved the conflict by provoking individual potential. Each was able to demonstrate exceptional ability as an individual, in an effort to proof that she was not the main contributor to the failure of the team work. This demonstrated the team leader strength in resolving the crisis. The only weakness was that the team leader could not manage to maintain the team spirit between the two conflicting parties.
In this particular case, I had a problem with how my boss handled me all the time. I always that my boss was hard to satisfy and could never appreciate individual work despite the effort put or level of improvement. We all knew him as an arrogant man, full of pride and who disregarded his juniors and regarded them as worthless. In this particular case, my boss refused to approve my leave on the pretense that I had not met my yearly work target.
I was so tired about everything in my work place and I needed a break. Thus, the refusal to approve my leave annoyed me very much and I had to confront the boss. The boss got angry and issues me with a disciplinary letter, with allegation of insubordination. In solidarity, staffs in my unit of operation when on a go slow and it aggravated into a big issue attracting the attention of senior management, especially in human resource department.
The crisis was aggravated by the fact that all workers in the unit knew the boss character and his negative attitude towards junior workers. This knowledge created fear that if permitted to discriminate one worker, he will make it a habit and there will be no time workers will ever get what they deserve. As workers we combined our notes to learn more about the boss. However, the boss seemed to know very little about our personalities. In my opinion he assumed that we all prioritized on employment than our peace of mind.
The unit happened to know that the boss was not very popular among the management team due to declining performance result in his unit. This gave us power to resist his dictatorship and stand for our rights with hope that the management would be interested to listen to our grievances.
As an individual I knew that my abilities were higher than I ever portrayed in every project I have handled under the current boss. I was also sure that the current environment was not favorable for my career growth and hence, I was ready to quit. Although the boss thought that I was scared of being sacked, in the reality, I had clearly planed my exit since I was already tired.
Every challenge in life presents a new opportunity to exploit our unknown potential. I never thought I would ever consider wasting my time fighting for workers’ rights. However, when the situation pushed me to the edge, I was able to mobilize others to end dictatorship in our unit of operation. My convincing speech surprises me even today.
The conflict arose due to the boss ego. In an attempted to demonstrate his power over workers’ rights, we demonstrated great level of resistance which resulted to great chaos that he could not manage to handle. This conflict made me realize the importance staying within the set rules and regulation, especially as a leader. I also learnt the importance of applying Johari window to learn more about others, especially when one is in a position of leadership. A leader should focus on increasing the open area and use the information gathered to improve interpersonal relationship in a department. Employing assumption to judge people character proved to be quite expensive in this case. Working with Johari window would have highly assisted the boss in resolving the matter, with much intelligence and improve his relation with workers.
General Plan for Development of Self in Conflict Situation
Conflict makes one understand various things about the other party than one could comprehend before. The main reason for conflict is having different stand. Thus, one can learn during conflict by trying to understand the perspective of the other party and trying to think in that line. This improves individual understanding of situation and gets to appreciate other people’s view more than before. Conflict sharpens a sense of solidarity and identity, interaction, internal change and problem clarity. Thus one can use a conflicting situation to understand oneself better, to sharpen individual ability to associate with others and grow in terms of identifying a situation where conflict can occur and employing measures to avoid it. Conflict also demonstrate the importance of knowing more about other people’s characters, behaviors, attitude, likes and dislike and hence making it easy to manage situations without provoking emotions or reactions that would deepen the conflict.
Conclusion Conflicts are highly probable to occur in any work environment, especially where team work is involved. It is thus important for an individual leader to learn to establish different strategies to handle conflicts. In this particular case, it was easy to learn the conflicting parties and to define a solution. However, in the second case, the person I was in conflict with was considerably senior, and hence with higher ability to handle the situation. However, his unwillingness to understand my stand made the situation worse, dragging more people to our conflict. The two situations demonstrated the importance of using Johari window to understand the other part, and to use this information to define a more manageable solution that would end the conflict.