Covert conflict exists when people express disagreements indirectly. Covert conflict behaviors, which include passive aggressiveness and games, unfortunately, make it almost impossible for people to recognize and resolve real problems. (In a sense, covert conflict is using the avoidance style of dealing with conflict (I lose, you lose). For this assignment you can choose to consider your own use of covert conflict behaviors or to analyze the way a conflict partner employed these techniques against you.
Follow these steps as you write a 2-page conflict report.
- Identify and briefly describe the conflict situation between you and another person and how a covert conflict behavior was used within the conflict. (1 Paragraph)
- Explain how the use of this covert conflict behavior hindered communication. How did this affect the outcome? Did you or the other person continue to ignore or avoid the major issues at stake within the conflict? Or were these finally recognized and talked about? Why or why not? (1-2 Paragraphs)
- Write a recommendation in which you indicate how you might apply – or did apply – the five problem-solving stages of conflict resolution in order to improve communication and create a more positive outcome in this conflict situation. Remember to support your recommendation with details. (3-5 Paragraphs)
Reminder: The five problem-solving stages of conflict resolution are:
(1) Define the conflict. (2) Examine possible solutions. (3) Test the solution. (4) Evaluate the solution. (5) Accept solution and exit – or Reject solution and start the cycle over.