Conflict is a fact of life, something that everybody must deal with now and then, both on the job and in one’s personal life. This assignment asks you to assess your own ability to manage conflict. You will complete three activities that ask you to think critically and introspectively about your experience, beliefs, values, and skills. Then, you will write a short paper that summarizes what you have learned about your own capacity and preparedness for managing conflict.
Part I: Conflict Capabilities Questionnaire
Review Ch. 8, “Are You Capable?” (pp. 122–137), of Conflict Survival Kit: Tools for Resolving Workplace Conflict.
Complete Exhibit 8.1: Conflict Capabilities Questionnaire (pp. 123–124). You are only required to complete the questionnaire for yourself. You are not required to complete this questionnaire for another person. You may simply write down your answers for each question (and the associated points) on a blank sheet of paper or Microsoft Word document.
Note your total score on a sheet of paper or Microsoft Word document. You may also wish to note any observations about your thought process, the questionnaire, or your responses. This information will help you to write your paper in Part IV.
Part II: Conflict Preparedness Worksheet
Download this Conflict Preparedness Worksheet.
Complete the worksheet according to the provided instructions.
Part III: Leadership Traits
Review the section “Behavior, Traits, and Characteristics of an Effective Conflict Manager” (pp. 333–338) in Ch. 17 of Conflict Survival Kit: Tools for Resolving Workplace Conflict.
Consider the six leadership traits of effective conflict managers that are listed in this reading: openness, self-awareness, persistence, consideration of others, critical reasoning, and integrity. As you read about these traits, consider the following questions:
- Why is each characteristic important when it comes to managing conflict?
- For each characteristic, can you think of a leader who best exemplifies it?
- Which characteristic is your strength, and in which area do you need to improve?
You may wish to note your responses and any other thoughts you have while reviewing this section on a sheet of paper or blank Word Document.
Part IV: Summary Paper
After completing Parts I–III, you should have a better understanding of the factors that influence conflict management preparedness and of your own beliefs, values, and capacity as a leader and conflict manager.
Write a 700- to 1,050-word paper that summarizes what you have learned about your own capacity and preparedness for managing conflict. Your paper should answers the following questions:
- How did you score on the Conflict Capabilities Questionnaire? According to this questionnaire, are you ready to manage conflict? Do you believe this assessment is accurate? Why or why not?
- What did you learn from the Conflict Preparedness Worksheet? What are your dominant perceptions of and values about conflict? If another person also participated in this assessment, was his or her perception similar to your own? Why or why not?
- Which of the six leadership characteristics identified in Part III is your strength? Is there one area in which you need to improve?
- Overall, are you prepared to manage conflict? Are there certain types of conflict for which you are most prepared?