Conflict: It is a process that
begins when one party perceives that another party has negatively affected, or
is about to negatively affect, something that the first party cares about. In
order for the conflict to exist, several factors must be present
must have opposing interests, thoughts, perceptions, and feelings.
involved must recognize the existence of different points of view
must be ongoing rather than a single occurrence
with opposing views must try to prevent one another from accomplishing their goals.
Conflict can be
a destructive force and can also be beneficial when we use it as a source of renewal and creativity. It can be
viewed in two ways. First, it can be considered as the negative force that
makes people feel uncomfortable and make them less productive. In another way, it can be viewed as natural part of
the organizational life and beneficial to the workplace.
There are four types of conflicts. They are: Interpersonal within a person who
got engaged in two or more activities that are incompatible, Interpersonal
which occurs between two or more people interacting and have incompatible
goals, Intragroup within a group when members disagree over goals and
leadership, Intergroup between groups or divisions that disagree over a task or a piece of information.
arise from both personal and organizational context. Personal context includes
the perceptions, cross-cultural differences, lack of motivation. Organizational
context includes Goal Incompatibility, Uncertainty, Resource Scarcity, Reward
Systems, and interdependence etc.
In order to
overcome the effects of the conflicts, management or third party uses
Negotiation. The term Negotiation is derived from a Latin word negotiates which
means to carry on business. It is defined as the process with the help of which
two or more parties involved in a conflict over outcomes attempt in reaching an
agreement. It is the constructive, positive alternative to arguing and is aimed
at building an agreement rather than winning a battle. Negotiations can occur
in the business place and in everyday
situations outside of the workplace when
there are more possible outcomes from a situation in which two or more parties
have an interest, but not determined what will be the outcome. For example, it
can occur between a buyer and seller in the purchase of a second-hand car or even between groups of
friends deciding on what film to watch. There are four basic third-party roles
involved in the negotiation process. They are:
Mediator is a neutral person whose main focus is to facilitate a negotiated
solution by reasoning and persuasion, suggesting alternatives to the involved
parties. They are more commonly seen in labor-management
conflicts and in civil court disputes
They act as the authority for dictating the agreement between the parties and
can be requested by the parties or enforced by
the parties by court or contract. The authority of them varies according to the
rules set by the parties or court law. The major advantage of having an
arbitrator is it always results in settlement.
Their job is to establish an informal communication link between both the
parties and are widely used in international and community disputes. They
engage in fact-finding, interpreting
messages and help the parties in reaching an agreement.
Consultant is a skilled and impartial third party who attempts to facilitate problem-solving via communication and analysis
and to improve the relations between the conflicting parties.
Styles: There are five long-recognized
styles of negotiating that characterize the approach the person is taking in
order to resolve the disputes or make a deal with the other party. Each
negotiator may have a different style of
negotiation and with the awareness of own style, and what the counterpart
brings may make a bumpier road to successful outcomes. Above mentioned five
styles will be followed by the negotiator and exhibit the certain
style: This style is used when the negotiators need to get quick results and is
based on the expected result I win – You Lose. In this style, competitor
asserts their interests and offer the results that are more favorable for them and the competing style is
mainly focussed on the outcome of the process rather than the relationship and
also making an effort to deceive and exploit the weakness of the other
party. This type of situation often may
lead to a deadlock as there is no chance of meeting two high competing
Style: It is quite opposite to that of competing style where the relationships
are mattered between the parties rather than the outcome. The result of this
maybe I lose – You Win. If one of the party is high in competing for style, the domination of the party increases and
other party generosity may be overlooked as a sign of weakness. It involves the
tendency in helping another party even by
giving up your own needs and also allows us to focus on issues that both sides
agree on rather than those of disagreement.
Style: It involves exploring the individual as well as mutual interests in an
effort of satisfying everyone’s needs. This style usually results in I win –
You win model where both the parties try to build trust to satisfy their needs,
search for creative solutions acceptable to both parties by sharing ideas among
themselves. It is one of the best-chosen styles
as both the parties will get benefitted. The main disadvantage of this style is
as the information is shared across the parties, they must make sure that no
party takes advantage of exploiting the data of the other party.
Style: It is a style in which parties not only avoids the issues but also the
negotiation itself which results in a loss
for both the parties (I lose – You lose). It is usually applied as the defense mechanism against the competing style
and is also difficult as the aim of this style is to avoid conflict but more
often avoiders get themselves into conflict.
Style: It is a style where both the parties compromise something for getting
the benefit. It is a partial-win, partial-lose situation. This style is used in
the business negotiations between the people known and trustworthy. According
to the theory, this style requires best quality negotiation training.
There are two types of negotiation based
on the relationship between the negotiators. Distributive negotiation mainly
based on the impersonal nature of negotiation which is not usually used to
build relationships. The integrative negotiation
which is based on creating benefits for both the parties that can help in
creating a long-term relationship.
Negotiation: This is also called as slicing the pie bargaining or win-lose
bargaining and emphasizes distribution of negotiated thing among the parties
involved. In this one party gets and one party loses whereas both the parties try
to protect their benefits without looking the other party interests. There are
some principles in this model like when slicing a pie, most valuable
information is negotiator’s best alternative to reaching an agreement which cannot be substituted by
anything. They can enhance the ability to get the alternative with the help of
following strategies: determining prior to negotiations, improve upon their
alternatives, researching the other party alternative, setting high
aspirations, using objective-appearing rationales to support offers and
appealing to norms of fairness.
Negotiation: It is also called as
win-win or expanding the pie negotiation and is mostly based on the
collaborative effort. It requires a high degree
of trust and relationship, sharing information about preferences and
priorities, asking diagnostic questions, making package deals, making multiple
offers simultaneously that can capitalize the expectations and attitudes and
use pre-and post-settlement strategy for a successful win-win negotiation. It
is the best way in order to create a long-term relationship along with mutual
the six important strategies that can be used in the negotiation process are:
negotiating process is continual, not an individual event: Outcomes of the
process are good if the relations are good and the relations must be developed
over time. It is the reason for which negotiators constantly look for the
opportunities to enhance the relationship and strengthen their position. The result of the negotiation may be determined
even before individuals meet for the discussion.
Positive: Many negotiators feel underestimated themselves as they don’t
perceive power inside them. It must be believed that the outcomes that are
brought up in the process are much needed by the parties. In most situations,
negotiators have more power than they think.
Information is crucial at any point in
time in negotiation. In order to get the information, perform the research on
the history, past problems and understand the strengths and weaknesses of both
the parties. The more knowledge they have about the situation, the better
position they will be to negotiate.
about best and worst outcome: We need to be ready for both the positive and negative outcomes even before the negotiations
begin. If the expectations of both the parties are known prior, it will be easy
to achieve a middle ground in the overlapping areas.
articulate and build value: This is the key where the difference between good
negotiators and masters are separated. Present all your thoughts and ideas to
both the parties such that they see a value in it. When presenting, be clear
about the expectations and also discuss the consequences and how proposed
solution will be beneficial.
and Take: When a person gives something up or concedes as part of the negotiation, always make sure to get something
in return. Maintaining a balance will establish that both parties are equal.
Stages of Negotiation:
In order to achieve a desirable outcome, it may be useful to follow a
structured approach which includes the following steps:
This stage involves ensuring all the pertinent facts are known to all the
parties beforehand and clear all the
questions that they have. Undertaking the preparation before the discussion about the disagreement will help in
avoiding the conflict in further stages and prevent the time wastage during the
meeting. It is also needed to discuss when and where the meeting takes place
and set a limited timescale in order to prevent the disagreement continuing.
In this stage, all the individuals involved in the negotiation present their
understanding of the situation. It is
helpful in taking notes during the stage and record all points put forward in
case there is no need for further clarification. It is extremely important to
include the skills like questioning, listening and clarifying and when
disagreement takes place it is easy to make the mistake
of speaking much and listening little. Both the parties should have equal
opportunity to present their case.
Goals: Based on the discussion goals, interests and viewpoints of both the
parties of disagreement should be clarified and based on that it is often
possible to identify some common ground. With clarification, we can avoid misunderstandings
that may cause problems and barriers to
reaching a beneficial outcome.
towards win-win outcome: In this stage, all the alternative strategies are
discussed and the compromises that can be done from both sides can be
considered. The ultimate goal of the negotiation is to get a win-win outcome. Compromises
are often positive alternatives which can often achieve greater benefit for all
concerned compared to holding to the original positions.
Based on the discussions and the alternate solutions, the agreement can be achieved by understanding the
viewpoints and interests of both the
parties. It is essential in order to keep everybody in open mind in order to
achieve an acceptable solution. Any agreement that is made should be perfectly
clear so that both sides know what has been decided
course of action: Based on the agreement, a course of action needs to
implemented in order to carry through the decision.
In any negotiation, the following
elements are important and more likely affect the ultimate outcome of
negotiation are Attitude, Knowledge and Interpersonal skills.