Conflict Styles

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  • When people are involved in conflict, they engage with each other with their words, tone of voice, and actions. These behaviors are called conflict styles. Those conflict styles in large part determine the outcome of the conflict. The way we behave when in conflict can lead to the conflict escalating or being suppressed, ignored, or resolved, resulting in either positive or negative consequences. Conflict styles are often described as comprising five basic styles: (1) avoidance, (2) competition, (3) compromise, (4) accommodation, and (5) collaboration.

    Avoidance is deciding not to engage in conflict. Competition involves a winner and a loser. Compromise involves a person giving up something for the benefit of the whole. Accommodation involves appeasement. Collaboration implies that people work as a team.

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