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What Factors Can Cause Conflict in the Workplace

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Nowadays, with the competition more and more intensively, directly lead to the required for the employees has been more and more strictly. So it’s made a lot of employees began to fear and boredom. Especially if the manager has one target need to finish at that moment, they usually will give their staff extra work. Certainly the staff will complain. For the employees, they have to work; they need money to support their families. So they just have one way to do that is nothing all day. Thereupon the conflict will be appearing. In my essay, I will divide into two parts. One is subjective side; the other is human being side. And then I will talk about why the problem will appear, and why the argument of conflict is inevitable in the workplace.

Main text

Previously we felt that the competition is between the products, but now it’s seems to change to human sides. Even to the point of conflict is inevitable. Especially it happened in the workplace, relationship and so on. However, what on the earth is the reason to cause this happen.

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Conflict is a state of mind. The parties should be involved. The probable definition conflict is different level within an organization. In general conflicts are based on difference wages and value. They always occur when the wages of one party come up against the different wages of another. Parties may include “shareholders, managers, departments, professional and groups; while conflict issues can include dividends, manager, bonuses and employees wage levels.” (David A. BUCHANAN AND ANDRZEJ A. HUCZYNSKI Organization behavior P660). There have five response management conflicts in the workplace that are Avoidance, Accommodation, Compromise, Competition and Collaboration.

For the subjective side: As far as I am concerted that the first reason is lack of communication. If the channels of the communication between manager and employees have blocked traffic, lack the necessary feedbacks and then lead to decrease employees’ enthusiasm and influence the work efficiency. If the employee did not beloved manager, maybe strike will be happen. On the other side if the manager did not believe staff, the employees will resign this job. It will due to a lot of conflict. In other words to say, this method will happen in each firm. Because each person is different include personality, education background, experience and home environment. If the manager wants to have a perfect communication with staffs they must have a clear idea to ask to each staffs. If not, the relationship with them will get worse. So it is so hard to control.

Secondly, it is a very reality problem. In my opinion, wages is also a big conflict between manager and staffs. I believe that most of employees go to work is in order that support their families and earn more money, instead of care about how much profit company can earn, what is the meaning of work or country’s economic. They more considered about the number of the salary weather increase. So the conflict has appeared. For companies, they want to keep wages down whist ensuring maximum employee effort. But on the opposite, employees want to increase wages relative to the effort they put in (According to hand out). How much wages can employees get depends on their position and ability. But this system for employees is not very useful; they will think about their workload and then ask for annual pay increase. The manager certainly cannot obey employees because they need worried about their cost and profit.

Finally, it’s task interdependencies. Base on an earlier chapter considered James Thompson’s (1967) three types of interdependence- Pooled, sequential and reciprocal. (According to David A. BUCHANAN AND ANDRZEJ A. HUCZYNSKI Organization behavior P662). Groups in sequential interdependence, and even more, in reciprocal interdependence, need a high level of co-ordination between their activities. If this will successful, then each department or group would have a high effectively and experience satisfaction. However, when the co-ordination was disappearing, the result will be conflict between them.

For the human being side: I think that is the range of the responsibility is uncertain or overlapping authority. They will divide a demarcation line and also separated the department to two parts. So those people will intrigue each other all day, when a task is allocated to this department, Individuals or groups may be uncertain as to who is responsible for performing which target or response; and who has to authority to direct whom. Each part may claim or shirk responsibility, and the result can be conflict. Groups may fight for the control of a resource, while individual managers may attempt to despoil one another’s authority. To tell the truth, this method cannot be resolve. Each employee has their own ambition to get a better work position. Maybe the human being cannot get rid of the fighting forever. Because when you feel that if you manager’s ability and personality is below you. You must not convince and then conflict with you manager. This condition has been became a necessary process for each employee.

Furthermore, the competition always exists in any place. That can say where competition has there will have conflict. It is impossible to deal with this problem. No matter use any approaches or measures. Each person could use any way to achieve their target. If on the premise that the resource is limited, once a task is allocated to an individual or group, it is also allocated resources to achieve it. When resources are limited, conflict must increase with respect to how money, space or facilities are shared out. They just have two ways, one is win other is lose. For this reason, we can see conflict also can appear at time of budget cuts, reduced promotion opportunities, and no increase in salaries or wages.

For the other side, emotion also can lead to conflict, and hard to avoid, because everyone will happy, angry, sad and joyous. Some employees were influenced by emotion easily. If was encouraged will be happy, to the contrary will angry. It’s easy to displease others.

Moreover, this point also belongs to human nature. Each person has their self-image if they make something wrong and then they will blame problem. The conflict will be happen. For my own part this relationship is complementary. Because of employees in each department will feel they become socialized and use their own particular view to communicate with other or involve problems. They always think higher status may cease to adapt their behaviors to accommodate the goals of others, and indeed, may try to achieve their objectives at the cost of others. If the problem happened, they begin to blame each other for problem and weakness. For example, if the conflict happens between marking and manufacturing, the conflict area is breadth of product line. For the marketing: ‘Our customers demand variety’, but for the manufacturing: ‘the product lines is too broad- all we get are short, uneconomical runs’. And then move to the new product introductions. For marketing ‘the new products are our lifeblood’. But for the manufacturing, ‘unnecessary design changes are prohibitively expensive. Gradually, the relationship will deteriorate and conflict develops.

“As a result, Conflict can be detrimental if it is not managed properly or if it is allowed to fester. At the first is fractured relationship. People who are friends may hurt each others, resulting in an irreparable rift. In the case of group conflict, factions may from that cause damage to the effectiveness of an organization’s operations. Furthermore, it can lead to violence. In extreme cases, conflict can even become violent. Employees maybe break the law who unsatisfactory the work condition. In personal situation, conflict in the home can lead to domestic violence or child abuse. Even on a large scale, conflict happen between states can lead to acts of war.” According to ( 14 November 2010)

“But surprisingly, it can have some advantage, also. Such as Clarification, Unification and Igniting passion. Clarification is meant by conflict brings all sides of an issue into the open. They can exchange of ideas and opinions between the parties, which can help in the resolution process. For unification, Conflict can result in the strengthening and cohesion of a group. (Those who take one side of an issue can unite around a cause, which can strengthen bonds or result in the fostering of new relationships. People may develop the type of camaraderie that can develop from “being in the same foxhole” together.) (Reference the internet). To the igniting passion, Conflict may stir passions in a dormant environment, creating a newfound sense of motivation. If a worker who bored or unchallenged by their job may lose motivation, at this moment a new boss with a strong personality who came in and making drastic changes, may motivate the workers to take interest in their work again.” According to ( 14 November 2010)


Wherever there are human beings, conflict is bound to take place in one form or other. Over time, conflict within organization may be inevitable. Conflicts also occur in the work place, at home, or between large groups of people. While work conflict usually has negative connotation, some good can also result. The key is to properly manage conflict before it gets out of hand. As far as I am concerted the manager must consider that the employee is a human not resources. Nowadays the business should be change the attitude which is means use a right cognition to face employee.


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