Conflicts in Nursing Workplace: Conflict Resolution in Nursing Leadership

Human beings as social animal interact with their environment which include fellow humans. There is a lot of variation in personality characteristics, individual needs and needs depositions, again as a result of environmental and biological factors.
The way people perceive things in their environment is always differs, since time began, people have been shifting blame to others which have always  resulted to conflicts. The forces for change and the close collaboration need for effective work in an organization produce abundant opportunities for conflict, so some time conflict produced effective outcome when tactically resolved.
Miles (1979) defines conflict as a condition that results when the goal directed activities of one group or coalition group blocks the goals directed activities of another group. This definition suggests that the essence of conflict is the inability of two groups or individuals to achieve their goals simultaneously. It’s also defined as a struggle or context between people with opposing needs, ideas, believes, values or goals. Conflict might escalate and lead to non productive results and can lead to final quality product when tactically resolved.
Signs of Conflict
– Lack of communication
– Absenteeism
– Competition
– Side talks and throwing words
– Absence of peace
– Misunderstanding
– Partiality
– Discomfort
Types of conflict in working place
Different approaches have been adopted in categorizing conflict,what ever approach used there certain facts which are considered in classifying conflict, it can either be internal or external conflict
– Internal conflict is said to be internal when it exist in an individual which can affect individual thought, ideas, concentration and goals of his organization making him difficult to make decisions.
– External conflict : is the type of conflict which directly affects working place which result from one person to another or groups or other external forces like extreme coldness e t c
External conflict is categorised into
1- Internal conflict – is the conflict between individuals in an organization
2- Intra group conflict- is the conflict within an internal group, team or department
3- Inter group conflict – is the conflict between different group
4 Inter organizational conflict – is the conflict that arises across different organizations to compete against each other
External conflict can also be classified as Interpersonal, structural and strategic.
The sources of conflict in working place include but not limited to the following :-
– Poor management
– Unfair treatment
– Unclear job roles
– Unfit delegation of duty
-Inadequate training
– Poor communication
– Language barrier
– Poor working environment
– Lack of equal opportunities
– Bullying and harassments
– Implementation of new technology
– Poor interpersonal relationship
– Subpar performance ( below average )
– Limited resources
– Lack of incentives and job performance appraisal
– Lack of motivation and promotion among other.
CONFLICT RESOLUTION :- Is the process by which two or more parties engaged in disagreement, dispute or debate reached an agreement resolving it.
Five steps are designed to manage conflict in workplace which include the following :-
1- ASSESSMENT :- This step involves in identification of the problems, in this step the information are collected from the parties or persons
2- ACKNOWLEDGEMENT :- During this stage, all parties or persons are listen to each other and try to understand the situations from each site
3- ATTITUDE :-  The parties or persons involved realized that there is natural differences between people based on culture, values, belief, gender, intelligence and other factors
4- ACTION :- In this step,the parties or persons begins to find a way to correct the problems by discussion the options.
5- ANALYSIS :- During this stage, the parties agree on the solution they choose, all information is summarized and solution is decided.
All these five steps can only be achieved by
1. Third party intervention :- Is the process where by third party will be introduced to resolve the problems using above steps
2. Unilateral intervention :- In this case the person or organization will seat and identify their problems and solve it using above guidelines
Bilateral:- where both parties identity their problems and solve it themselves using above steps
-Problems solving as create an opportunity for brainstorming and allowing numerous alternative to tackling problems.
– Collective efforts and team spirit are possible as people aggressively pursue their goals
– It can activate people by  eliminating monotony and boredom and moving people in to action
– It can be educative because confrontation can open up ideas,thus help to learn new facts.
– It  performs a group preserving function by eliminating hostility and allowing free expressions.
– It reduces performance effectiveness
– It generate negative feelings among the people concerned
– Loss of employment or dismissal
– Makes coordination of activities difficult for the leader
– It lead to non productive organization
– It may lead to crisis and violence
– Waste of resources and material e t c
Conflict arises any time there is disequilibrium in the perception of situations among people in workplace. It can be functional or dysfunctional and attributed to many factors which can be from the individual or from the organization. Conflict may start with mild,sometimes, unrecognized problems which escalate to more devastating consequences.It can be interpersonal,inrapersonal or intergroup. Resolution of conflict is by many strategic that,the manager should carefully select using human touch to suite the situations
– Standhope, S.& Lancaster. J. (1988).Community health nursing (2nd ed.). Louis: The CV .Mosby Co.
-Thompson, A.  R. (1981) Education and development in Africa.London: The MacMillan press.
– Hodges H.M.(Jnr)( 1978).Conflict and consensus. New York: Happer and Row.
– Katz, D. & Kahn, R. (1978). The social psychology of organizations. (2nd ed.). New York : Wiley.

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