Posted by: leish79 | September 30, 2013

Conflict resolution

After completing the conflict resolution questionnaire I discovered that my conflict resolution style is:

Collaborating. You tend to express above average assertiveness and above average cooperation. Some of your associates may think of you as an owl because you believe that two people working together can come up with a better answer than either can produce individually.

I don’t think I was surprised by the outcome. In my day-to-day work life I tend to promote and support the idea that joint decision making between me and those I supervise leads to best outcomes for our clients. I support this view as I appreciate that I am not the expert on each case being allocated. I do after all supervise six people each of who are responsible for an average of nine cases each.

For the most past I would say that the conflict resolution strategy I employ has served me well in my current role. There have been limited experiences whereby this approach has not resulted in a joint decision being made that each person involved can take some responsibility and ownership of. However that being said, on those occasions when this hasn’t worked out, I have no issues in reverting to traditional forms of leadership and making the decision which I would consider best given the circumstances.

When considering my approach to conflict resolution what stands out to me as an area for development would be addressing the issue in conflict quickly and directly. Whilst I have no qualms in making a decision, I often take time out to consider the situation carefully and thoroughly before addressing the issue in conflict. This often leads to the issue not being resolved and creating a bigger issue, or alternately it leads to the issue blowing over and no discussion or resolution occurring. Generally when the latter occurs there are no obvious negative outcomes however the thinking process utilised by the staff member that led to the conflict has not been challenged and therefore the likelihood of further conflict arising remains high.

My current role encompasses assumed leadership and therefore resolving conflict is easier given the hierarchy of the organisation. I anticipate that exerting leadership and subsequently resolving conflict as a teacher librarian (TL) will be a new challenge given there is no assumption of leadership assigned to the TL role. Given my current conflict resolution style, I feel I am well suited to make the transition as collaboration is an integral part of the TL role.

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