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Developing Your Conflict Competence: A Hands-On Guide for Leaders, Managers, Facilitators, and Teams by Tim A. Flanagan, Craig E. Runde

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Chapter 5. Team Conflict Competence

When we work with teams, we ask the members if they encounter conflict in their work. They almost always say yes and readily agree that they will face it again in the future. When we probe further to see if they have developed processes for handling conflicts when they emerge, they almost always say no. This is why we believe teams have such a difficult time dealing with conflict.

Team conflict is both natural as well as inevitable. It emerges from many types of differences that the members bring to a team such as education, experience, values, culture, personality, and interests. These differences can sometimes lead to people feeling threatened. They can also create expectations about how others should respond. ...

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