Chief objective of the group
Dealing with conflicts is a challenge. First it is crucial to find the real causes of conflict and not the symbol and deal with it. During this time acceptance of the persons and not the behaviour is paramount. Make it clear that intolerable language is forbidden and encourage conflicting parties to express their feelings. Each should be given enough time to relate to accusations and frustrations. It is important too that the leader or mediator be neutral and bring out the chief objective of the group.
By facilitating conflicting groups to focus outside themselves to the greater good of the group and not personal ambition, then reduces area of conflict. Nonetheless, there cases where conflicting parties have an ‘in your face’ attitude and literacy out of control. In such scenarios, letting them say what they want until they get tired would work, or going into the active listening mode so that the people calm down. Its important to keep calm but when all goes to normal a clear warning against irrational behavior should be set and perhaps a change in group structure may be called for.
For example, Stella a colleague in the workplace tends to be ill tempered yet very ambitious to climb the ranks. She tramples on anyone who threatens to be better than her in terms of developing marketing slogans for a product. Recently she and Diane, a new intern, proposed slogans that were powerful although Diane’s was weaker. Group members sided with Diane’s since they loath Stella. Stella was furious and intervention had to be sought since she almost went physical with Diane.
Ultimately, all efforts to calm her down failed and she was swooped for another group member in another team. This shows how severe conflicts can be. Nonetheless, conflicts can air out grievances which when resolved, irons out tensions which may be impeding on teamwork and knowledge sharing. This is a good aspect of teamwork. Group goals, social interdependence and trust. Groups share common goals which should be set collectively. This helps to ensure that each owns the group and shows commitment.
In developing group goals it is important to collect suggestions, prioritize them, brainstorm and discuss each and ways of achieving them and evaluate the benefits and repercussions of each then finally decide in the one to adopt. Group members depend on each other for affiliation opinions, help, and direction and so on. This means that trust is necessary to facilitating this. Group members and leadership should foster this through team building activities.