Conflicts can be both good and bad. Indeed, most of us believe that conflicts are dangerous and try to avoid it at all cost. In fact, we think that the presence of conflicts in organizations indicate that something is drastically wrong. However, the contemporary view is that conflicts are inevitable. Of course, too much of conflicts in an organization are bad and destructive. On the other hand, absence of conflicts leads to lack of creativity, stagnation, boredom and dissatisfaction among employees.
Therefore, every organization needs conflicts to a certain extent. Moreover, effective handling or management of conflicts is essential for organization’s development. Experts have identified different views of conflict like functional or dysfunctional conflicts. For example, Anderson and Kyprianou (1998) list three views of conflict viz. positive view, negative view and balanced view.
Firstly, the positive view looks at conflict as a process that leads to constructive outcomes. This view holds that conflicts bring about positive change in the organization. Conflicts that are well managed lead to innovation and change.
Secondly, the negative view holds that conflicts bring serious negative impact on the organization. According to this view, conflicts create tension, anxiety, low employee morale, stress and ultimately affects the well-being of the employees and their quality of life. Prolonged conflict situations might lead to individual and group dysfunction.
Finally, in the balanced view, conflicts are seen to be as desirable at certain times and as destructive at other times. Often times, from a managerial perspective, the balanced view is thought to be better. In this view, a minimum amount of conflict is necessary for effective performance.
Nevertheless, it depends on the effective management of conflicts by the managers.
Views of Conflict – Questionnaire
If you would like to know the perceptions of employees on conflicts, download this sample questionnaire. This is only a sample and contains twenty-two statements covering the three views of conflicts namely positive, negative and balanced. You may modify the questionnaire to suit your requirements.
For more sample questionnaires click http://questmeraki.com/category/questionnaires-samples/
Anderson A H and Kyprianou. (1998). Result Oriented Organizational Behaviour. Beacon Books.