ArLyne's Diamonds

A running commentary of ideas

Monday, June 13, 2011

Negotiation and Conflict Resolution Commonalities

We tend to think of negotiation as involving many people in huge disputes (union/management or countries about to be at war for example), or sales people trying to close a big-deal. But, in truth we are in negotiation with others every day. We tend to think of Conflict Resolution as a last resort when parties are trying to avoid litigation, such as when I did custody and visit mediation, but in truth we are in conflicted situations every day. Sometimes conflict is a good thing. Sometimes in needs a third person to help resolve it.

The overlap between these two disciplines is great. Successful negotiations involve working through differences and conflict to reach a satisfactory solution. Conflict resolution has the same desirable outcome.

We negotiate in the workplace when we are trying to obtain resources, or personnel for our pet project. We resolve conflict (or at least attempt to) whenever someone comes to us complaining about something someone else did or didn’t do.

Change management is a form of both negotiation and conflict resolution. I can’t successfully implement change in any organization without first trying to deal with the fear, anger, and other reactions of people who either want the change to happen more quickly, or don’t think the change is necessary. It’s always about negotiation and conflict resolution.

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