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Conflict Resolution

Conflict Style Assessment

Conflict Style Assessment

Conflict between people can take many forms. At its most dramatic it can mean fundamental disagreements which lead to fights (and even battles and war if enough people feel the same way about the disagreement). Moderate conflict may mean that an individual or a group of people feel angry at or irritated by another individual or group which leads to moderate antagonism and bad feeling (sometimes for a sustained period of time). And at its most gentle, conflict may mean that we don’t feel or think the same way as another person or person and it creates either an underlying tension or an argument about the issue (usually over a short period and without creating a residual resentment).

At the center of all three forms of conflict is the idea of opposites, incompatibility and divergence (of feelings or ideas). Put another way, conflict can simply occur when ideas and feelings clash or pull in different directions and something has to give.

For some people, conflict is an important necessity to resolve differences and it may even provide excitement and stimulation. For others however, conflict always has the potential to make them feel uncomfortable and can cause much stress and anxiety. Whatever the reaction, understanding and managing the reasons for conflict and better appreciating how to manage it successfully, whenever it occurs, is a key personal and organizational competence well worth learning.

An effective conflict assessment helps individuals to appreciate not only their own style or approach when in a conflict situation, but also the styles used by others to try and get their own way. This should also include an assessment of the situational factors that are at the heart of most conflicts and disputes.

Conflict Style AssessmentThis online “conflict style assessment” (see link below) allows individuals to carry out a self-assessment in terms of the conflict style they most often adopt, their secondary style and even their tertiary style (plotting the results on a four quadrant grid for maximum visual impact). Individuals end up with a personalized report of results which also then shows where efforts to improve may be focused in the future, including specific steps to “flex” their style to better deal with the many different conflict situations they are likely to encounter. The $15 spent on this assessment is therefore well-worth the investment.

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About Dr. Jon Warner

Dr. Jon Warner is a prolific author, management consultant and executive coach with over 25 years experience. He has an MBA and a PhD in Organizational Psychology. Jon can be reached at

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About the Editor and Primary Author

Jon Warner

Jon Warner is an executive coach and management consultant and in the past has been a CEO in three very different companies. Read more

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