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Posted on September 3rd, 2012, by

The team work is very important and team members should learn to cooperate effectively. Otherwise, the overall effectiveness of the team work will be extremely low. To develop an effective team work, team members should communicate with each other to maintain the same pace and coordinate their actions to meet team goals. However, in spite of close cooperation and positive interpersonal relationships between team members, any team can face conflicts, which interfere into the normal work of the team and undermine its functioning. In such a situation, conflict management becomes particularly significant because conflict management allows not only to resolve conflicts within a team but also to prevent them and develop positive relationships between team members.

On analyzing the problem of the conflict resolution within a team, it is necessary to remember that conflicts always happen. Even the best teams are vulnerable to conflicts. At this point, it is hardly possible to disagree with the team charter that conflicts constitute an integral part of the life and teams cannot exist without conflicts. Paradoxically, often conflicts help teams to improve their performance because, as teams resolve conflicts, team members learn to work together, they become more tolerant, supportive and cooperative.

At the same time, in order to resolve conflicts and disputes within a team effectively, it is important to understand the cause of a conflict.

Conflicts never start from nothing. Any conflict has its own cause and not a single conflict can be resolved until its cause is eliminated totally. What is meant here is the fact that the conflict persists as long as the cause of the conflict stays within a team. In such a situation, the team can smooth the relationships between team members but, if the cause of the conflict persists, team members will never be confident in each other and, as soon as the team face a serious problem to solve, the conflict outbursts over and over again. Therefore, the identification and elimination of the cause of the conflict is the major condition of the resolution of the conflict.

Furthermore, communication is essential for the resolution of the conflict because team members should learn to communicate, to talk to each other to understand what the problem actually is and to develop the common strategy to tackle the problem which raises a conflict or conflicts within the team. Moreover, in the course of discussion of the conflict, team members can understand better the position of each team member and develop a consensus that will put the end to the dispute between team members.

Finally, team members should use an effective conflict management strategy. Taking into consideration that team work implies the close interaction between team members to reach team goals, the conflict management strategy should be oriented on the conflict avoidance and search of compromise between team members. At the same time, it is important to develop the rules of discussions or disputes within a team in order to avoid or minimize the risk of conflicts. These rules should include such principles as: mutual respect of team members; each team member has a right and opportunity to express his/her opinion openly; disputes are resolved on the basis of consensus or mutual agreement solely; any disobedience to the aforementioned principles is banned.

Thus, on following the aforementioned recommendations, teams can avoid conflicts and, if they occur, teams can manage them successfully.

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