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Teamwork, Collaboration, and Conflict Resolution

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  • Pages: 4
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  • Category: Conflict

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The text book describes conflict as “a process that begins when one party perceives another party has or is about to negatively affect something the first party cares about.” There are different views on dealing with conflict. There is the traditional view that seeks to eliminate any conflict and the interaction group that seek to use conflict as a stepping stone to greater things. Conflict can arise in any situation and, following the managed conflict view, it is not necessarily something to be push under the table but something to be examined and resolved.

The writing team members all had different ideas and concerns regarding the new pilot for a television series. With only two weeks remaining to present a finished pilot to the network the writing team is unable to agree on the pilot theme. Eileen is unwilling to listen to Emily’s idea. She thinks she knows what is acceptable to the network, and Emily’s idea is not acceptable. Douglas agrees with Eileen. He is worried that the progressive concept is too progressive, based on his dealings with the network in the past. Adam knows the network is revamping and thinks they may be receptive to a progressive pilot, but knows that Eileen and Douglas know the network better than he does. Emily is inexperienced, does not know the network, but is sure her idea is a good one. She thinks they are not listening to her because she lacks experience. The team is experiencing competition, where each member is more concerned with being right, than in getting the job done. By using the competition, some avoidance and accommodation to understand the problem and the concepts, the team is directed with an authoritative decision to listen to each idea and evaluate it based on the idea’s merits alone. After that, the team came to a collaborative decision to use the tried-and-true concept for the pilot in two weeks and develop a pilot of the progressive concept for another network.

My initial management style is to listen to everyone’s opinions, weigh the information, and make a decision based on what I think the most favorable outcome is. Unfortunately, this allows further conflict. Collaboration takes time and calls for an impartial and unbiased manager (Simulation, n.d.). Collaboration results in each team member’s belief of appreciation by others. Each team member appreciates the time managers spend listening to his and hers problems. Initially I thought Emily the bright new comer was a cause of intimidation for Eileen and Douglas. I also thought Adam the Creative Head should know a good idea when he sees one. This type of attitude reflects as biased and impartial in a creative atmosphere, and instigates further misunderstandings. This initial attitude is the result of Adams approach to me. With a deadline looming there is no room for further conflicts. The promotion of collaboration gives way for each team member to discuss ideas instead of put each other down. Collaboration allows the team to hear Eileen and Douglas’s concept as well as Emily’s. Emily admits never acquiring the chance to hear the alternative concept because of defending her own concept. Eileen and Douglas had her on the defense, which she took personally.

The conflict management style of collaboration allows each member to hear each other out and make his and hers own decisions regarding which concept to use. This results in mature behaving team members working together for the betterment of the project before them. Among the five strategies the one I appreciate the most is competition. Competition is useful in other avenues as well as conflict management, such as academics. Although competition does require a loser it does a good job of stimulating teams to put out best efforts. Further, competition saves time when there is a deadline looming. When working in a group conflict is an inevitable matter that one cannot escape, there are varieties of conflicts; ideas, opinions, beliefs, culture differences, and desired accomplishment. Everyone have different ideas and goals in accomplishing their tasks, therefore, it might be difficult to be dealt with amongst one another if they cannot come to an agreement or have an open mind for new things.

Conflict in a group could mean that there is a diversity of believes, aims, and ideas. It indicates that team members are contributing their part, sharing their different point of view and trying to make a different. As a manager, one should not look at conflict as a bad thing; instead tolerate minimum conflict in a group as a way of motivation and a development method for improvement or exchanging ideas to reach their goals. However, if conflict increase and cannot be settled in a professional or peaceful manner, as a manager, I would use the collaboration strategy method to help solve the issues. I would start to request each team members to do their own participation and write down their ideas with a supportive hypothesis before the meeting for the team to evaluate and discussion. At the meeting I would just stay back and listen to everyone as they share their ideas and opinions, after the discussion I would carefully review the choices, elaborate the ideas more and with everyone agreement develop a resolution.

They are different ideas on the role of conflict in a team, and there are also different ideas on how to solve or deal with conflict in a team. In the simulation the team first chooses to accommodate the writers and in the second meeting they chose to have the writers collaborate. There is also competitive, compromise, and avoidance ideas for resolving conflicts. Conflict can be time consuming and counterproductive, and because of this it has to be dealt with or resolved.


Teamwork, Collaboration, and Conflict Resolution Simulation (n.d.) Resolving Conflict in Teams Retrieved February 18, 2013 from http://www.phoenix.edu

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