Conflict in project management is inevitable. In fact they say that the only way to not have a project management conflict is to have a one-person project. And even then, some people have a tendency to argue with themselves.
Karin Brünnemann (https://www.linkedin.com/in/karinbrunnemann) recently gave a presentation on the topic of Managing Conflict in Projects to the Project Management Institute (PMI)® Slovakia Chapter. And because it was such a success she suggested that we bring it to you as well!
Karin’s presentation and our interview is full of solid advice and best practices you can apply to the conflicts you will inevitably encounter. We will discuss: Definition & Characteristics of Conflict
- Conflict in the Context of Project Management
- How to Analyse a Conflict
- How to Manage Conflict
A big part of the interview is actually focused on that last part -- the actual project management conflict resolution. We are, however, not going to talk about conflict resolution on multicultural projects. That’s reserved for next week.
Recently we have discussed steps to take to when you decide to step in and step up to conflict resolution. In ‘You Decide to Resolve a Conflict’ Part I and Part II one of the underlying assumptions was that you had time to plan your actions and the steps you would take to resolve the conflict.
All of that is really great when you can plan to face a conflict in advance. But some of you might be saying to me, “But conflict can’t be scheduled.” Yes, it’s true. Not all conflicts can be scheduled. Some situations happen right in front of you and you’re involved and you see that you need to stay involved. What do you do?
The Accommodating Mode is one of the modes of conflict resolution as defined by the TKI or Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument. The TKI breaks our conflict handling preferences into five modes.
Some people view being accommodating as a sign of weakness. If you always accommodate others around you then perhaps you are exhibiting a weakness. A weakness in your conflict resolution skills because this means you are always being very unassertive. You might even neglect your own concerns to satisfy the concerns of others. This could be self-sacrificing, but it can also be selfless generosity or charity or obeying orders when you would prefer not to. Other than charity or obeying orders, is there any other time when drawing from this mode is desirable? Absolutely, please read on.
The Project Human Resource Management questions on the PMP® certification exam focus heavily on organizational structures, roles and responsibilities of the project manager, team building, and conflict resolution. The Project Human Resource Management processes include the following: