Conflicts occurs when interdependent people perceive incompatible goals and interference with each other in achieving those goals. (Folger, Poole, &Stutman, 2001)
Guidelines for Managing Conflicts Effectively
1. Define your needs (for yourself, for others)
2. Mentally rehearse what you’re going to say
3. Keep it short (because you don’t want to say something irrelevant)
4. Be ready with severe potential solutions
(You need to choose only one guideline to write from here!)
Interpersonal goals: defend your image, maintain a relationship, resolve conflict, obtain support, persuade, and give constructive criticism.
Three types of Interpersonal Goals
1. Instrumental goals (tangible goals/resources/things we are trying to get)
– Example: get help from a friend, borrow a family car, persuade a romantic partner to quit smoking, obtain a promotion at a job
– What are some risks of trying to accomplish an instrumental goal? Think you are using them, think you are needy, risk relationships
2. Relational goals (trying to maintain a relationship)
– Example: make a friend, ask for a date, share an activity, escalate a relationship, terminate a relationship
– What are some risks of trying to accomplish an instrumental goal? Rejections, out of control, regret the change, might change the relationship with other people
3. Self-presentational goals (trying to present a desired image of yourself to other person. Face work)
– Different occasions might differ this goal: work-professional; friend-friendly; romantic partner-romantic.
Attribution: process of explaining the cause of a person’s behavior. (How we make sense of other’s behavior)
External attribution: your explaining on someone and having to do with the situations (someone is sick)
Internal attribution: explaining the behavior personality. That person is really rude and you live…(some personality doesn’t match)
What attributions could you make about these behaviors?
+A person does not call you back after a first date (emergency is external. Internal: I don’t care)
+A professor is late to class
+A friend forgets your birthday (external-I have homework)
Four Factors Predicting Internal versus External Attributions
1. Intent: was/wasn’t on purpose
the knowledge of the behavior, the ability to behavior
2. Distinctiveness uniqueness of this behavior
3. Consistency-the same over time
4. Consensus-would most people give the same behavior in the same way (external-everyone think this exam is hard, internal-you simply just didn’t review)
For you better understand, let me give you an example of my classmate work. But you 100% can’t use this one in the essay! This is just for an impression!
3 pages double spaced
1. Chose one guideline
→ Mentally rehearse what you are going to say
2. Chose a moment when this guideline was violated
→ The time my roommate was eavesdropping and came out of her room to join in on a conversation she was not even part of.
→ Many hurtful things were said from her
→ Happened when my roommate did not mentally rehearsed what she wanted to say.
→ She was defending some guy at a bar she did not even know
→ Really demonstrated where her heart was.
→ Ended up ruining our friendship for good.
3. Either I committed it or someone else committed it against me or one that I saw (third party)
or one I saw on tv.
→ This violation was committed against me.
1) Identify guideline
→ Mentally rehearse what you are going to say
2) Define what that guideline means
3) Explain what happened when the violation occurred
→ When this violation occurred, a friendship ended.
→ When this violation occurred, feelings were hurt
4) Give details about the situation in which the violation occurred
5) What did each person say?
6) What did each person do?
6) How did each person react?
7) Describe the interpersonal goals and attributions of each person involved in the
8) What interpersonal goal(s) did each person seem to be trying to achieve?
9) What attribution(s) did they seem to make for each other’s behavior?
10) Evaluate the outcome of the violation.
11) Were the interpersonal goals and needs of each person met (in your view)? Why or why not?
12) Anticipate what would have happened if the guideline had been followed.
13) Describe how
the episode would have unfolded differently.
14) Would the interpersonal goals and needs
of each person have been met more effectively (in your view)? Why or why not?
15) Judge the ultimate value of the guideline. In your view, how useful is the guideline for
achieving effective interpersonal communication?
Now you should know how to write this essay. Don’t choose complicated words and try to use easy-understanding examples, like what happened around you (maybe like you and your roommates have disagreement on what temperature the room should be set, and then you guys have a conflict) as the guideline being violated.
And the handout requirement is so important!!!!!!! Please follow all of them!!!!! Ask me anytime if you have question!