The Importance Of Conflict In Project Management

768 Words 4 Pages
There are several situations or risk areas where negotiation may be required due to the dynamics of project management, as both are inevitable. In general, conflicts occur when there are different views or ways to do something. While, the goal may be same, conflict can cause situations where reaching that goal is not the same. There are some cases where goals may be completely different. Some examples of conflict in project management are deciding what vendors to use or the use of subcontractors (outsourcing), input from two or more functional units (chartering), management of changes (scope change), resources, scheduling, priorities, technology, costs, administrative procedures and many times-personality differences of the project teams. …show more content…
To help, several negotiation techniques and strategies are available and effective depending on the risk areas. The objective is to reduce or resolve conflict to the point that all parties are satisfied. Creating a plan is the first and most critical phase to handle conflicts. It will identify potential risks, what is creating the conflict; determine whom the key players are and the ways to approach it, including deciding whom the final decision maker is. Success in negotiations is often based on careful analysis of the other part’s current and prospective circumstances (McCarthy & Hay, 2015). According to authors, McCarthy and Hay, who co-wrote the book, Advanced Negotiation Techniques, planning permeates every stage of negotiation, and should reviewed and refined during and in between every other phase of the negotiation. The planning phase can determine the method used to identify factors that influence the conflict resolution such as the importance and intensity of the conflict, time, position of those involved and the motivation to resolve conflict. Techniques used in the planning process to facilitate the method for negotiation include Brainstorming, Mind Mapping, Nominal Group, and Affinity Diagrams. Once planning occurs, the next step is to decide on the most appropriate method. According to PMBOK (2013), there are five general techniques for resolving conflict: Withdraw/Avoid; Smooth/Accommodate; Compromise/Reconcile; …show more content…
Parties at interest are usually the Project Team, the Client, Functional Management and Senior Management. According to PMBOK (2013), using tact and open communications will help maximize efficiency of the negotiation process. Furthermore, establishing ground rules such as time constraints and specific procedures during exchange of proposals will support the process. The involved entities should realize that thinking first and acting second helps to build trust. Listening to motives and maintaining a give-or-take approach will further build on a positive negotiation session. Many times, concessions will be necessary by both parties. The solution must satisfy not only the needs of the negotiating parties, but meet the objectives of the project. Listening and having an open-mind with where each party stands sets the framework for honest and open communications. Successful conflict management results in greater productivity and positive working relationships (PMBOK, 2013). Furthermore, when managed properly, differences of opinion can lead to increased creativity and better decision making, so being in the right mind-set and admitting when one is wrong will strengthen these relationships. Finally are the steps to close out the negotiation and implement the decision. The decision needs to be

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