Resolving Conflict

Paul Naybour

Hi Paul,

Can you please give me some feedback on my answer below. Thanks

Explain, using an appropriate model and describe 5 methods that a project manager could use to resolve conflict.

A project manager can resolve conflict by referring to the Thomas Kilman Conflict Resolution Model (which ranks conflict styles according to an individual’s level of assertiveness vs cooperativeness) to identify the style of conflict he has to resolve in a particular situation.

There are five styles of conflict which are;-


This is where the person demonstrates low cooperativeness and low assertiveness and decides to avoid the issue. The issue can usually re-emerge at a later date. It’s worth finding out the key issues for this person and helping them to get these on the table to discuss with other parties and agree a suitable decision to then move things forward.


This is a highly cooperative person with little assertiveness that will “go with the flow”. This could have the disadvantage that the team progress the wrong decision in terms of the idea to develop. The pm should look to find ways to support this person in being more vocal within the team and express their ideas.


This is style is a highly assertive person who is not ready to allow others ideas to be heard or considered. The pm should consider ways to get this person to cooperate and be more of a team player. They could also look at ways in which to get this individual to consider the benefits of other ideas tabled.


This is a highly assertive and highly cooperative person willing to work with you to resolve the issue.  The pm should look for ways to get this person to support him in making the team even more successful by working more as a single unit towards a common goal.


This is the person is willing to give and take and perhaps not get all of what they want. This is more in line with real life and each party will need to decide what they are willing to compromise on before entering into healthy negotiations.


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