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Individual Conflict

Though generally conflict arises between two or more persons, it may also arise within an individual. This happens when he cannot reconcile amongst his competing goals or when his behavior is different from what is expected. There can be, thus, goal conflict and role conflict.

(a)    Goal conflict:

When individual faces mutually competing goals amongst which he has to choose one, he often faces the conflict of which goal to choose. This conflict an take three forms:

(i)    Approach-Approach conflict:

In this from, the individual has to choose from two or more equally attractive goals which are mutually exclusive. It means he can choose only one at the cost of nether. As both the goals are attractive, the conflict does not affect organizational functioning in any way. If a person has to choose from two attractive job opportunities, whichever job he chooses, his contribution to organizational goals will be positive.

(ii)    Approach-Avoidance Conflict:

In this form of conflict, the person faces an alternative which has both positive and negative consequences. If he gets a job at the place he does not like, he faces both positive and negative consequences of the alternative and the conflict may affect his job performance.

(iii)    Avoidance-Avoidance Conflict:

In this form, the person facts two mutually exclusive goals both of which he does not like. This conflict usually remains unresolved till a better option is found. If a person does not like his present job and also the new job, he is not attracted by both the foals and thus, conflict continues at intrapersonal level.

Goal conflict usually clashes individual goals with organizational goals. While approach-approach conflict does not affect organizational goal, the other two approaches affect the organizational performance. Managers should, therefore, resolve goal conflict by integrating individual goals with cognitional goals.

(b)    Role conflict :

Role is and expected set of behavior that a person exhibits by virtue of his position. He may perform formal role as prescribed by his job decryption and delegated authority or informal role derived out of his informal activities. Role conflict arises when role exhibited by a person is different from his anticipated role. Performing one role means rejecting the other. He cannot satisfy all the expectations of his role.

Role conflict because of the following reasons.

(i)    When a person is not clear about the role of his job, that is, what he has to perform on his job, role conflict arises. Responsibilities of a job should be clear so that a person knows expectations of his role. Whether a salesman has to increase will result in role conflict.
(ii)    Role conflict arises when there is confusion over expectations of organizational positions. If a person is expected to perform different roles from the same position, he will not be clear of which h role to perform. Supervisor, for example, can be a member of the management team, Or worker’s group or a middleman between management and workers. His actual role not being clear out of his supervisory position, there will arise role conflict.
(iii)    Personal characteristics of a person can also lead to role conflict. People with higher-order needs or emotionally-sensitive people are more prone to role conflict because of personal involvement with their jobs.

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