• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Managing Interpersonal Conflict helps readers better understand and ultimately manage their routine interpersonal conflicts. Specifically, the book walks readers through the conflict process--from the initial decision of whether or not to confront differences to how to plan the actual confrontation. Donohue deals extensively with the negotiation process and, if negotiation proves unsuccessful, with third-party dispute resolution. The book emphasizes keeping conflicts under control and keeping focused on the issues. The key to managing conflict is to address differences collaboratively so parties can create better solutions and, ultimately, strengthen their relationships. Managing Interpersonal Conflict prepares and encourages the reader to stop avoiding their conflicts and start confronting them. Designed for college and university undergraduates, Donohue's text and the Interpersonal Commtext series will also interest students and professionals in management studies, sociology, organization studies, and social psychology. “They provide a very useful look at a somewhat broader than usual range of conflict issues…. Where the decision is to confront, it offers useful approaches to allowing face saving and to issue structuring that will allow the conflict, in many cases, to be readily resolved…. The second section … provides a useful and easily worked with framework for negotiating, and deals most effectively with the use of and responses to the exercise of power in the negotiation context…. The book is exceptionally readable and effective in its presentation of approaches to conflict. While it is not a traditional academic text, periodic references to the conflict literature are used to allow the reader to examine the issues presented in more depth. The book will serve as an outstanding text for a training program in conflict management and can also be used by an individual effectively to learn these techniques.” --The Alternative Newsletter

What Kind of Conflict Help is Available?
What kind of conflict help is available?

By now, you probably see yourself as a negotiation expert. Actually, negotiation, like all communication contexts, requires extensive experience to realize success. Nevertheless, the basic overview in Chapter 6 should enable you to take control of your negotiation activities.

What if your negotiation efforts fail? What if the negotiation regresses to a needs-centered discussion and escalates into verbal, or even physical, aggression? Many people use a third party to help intervene in disputes that escalate out of control. Third parties work best when both disputants agree to use them in a valid attempt at problem solving.

Unfortunately, many people reject third-party help. One person in a marriage may want to see a counselor, but ...

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