Interpersonal Conflict

In contemporary society, people develop various issues that affect their relations and perspectives towards life. The problems can be caused by emotional, physical, and personal differences regarding the nature of approaches that can be used at any given time to accomplish certain outcomes. For instance, a married couple can fight over finances because of the beliefs held by one party against the other. In the professional context, workers might develop issues towards the executive because of the approaches used to respond to the underlying and emerging concerns in the workplace. From this realization, interpersonal conflict is triggered by poor communication, which limits individuals from understanding the perspectives held by individuals towards various aspects of life and society. Communication behaviors and individual differences contribute towards interpersonal conflict by exposing people to a challenging environment that limits their interactions and understanding.

Communication is the foundation of interpersonal relations and plays a significant role in enhancing interactions between two or more individuals. When people fail to communicate regularly, they grow apart and focus on other aspects of life that influence their perspectives in their relationship. In this regard, constant communication limits any misunderstandings that may interfere with the quality of relations (Collisson, 2014). Monitoring aspects such as choice of words and tone used to communicate helps to overcome problems that may arise due to misunderstandings. Therefore, consistent communication allows people to share their emotions and express their feelings in a way that provokes the other party to offer feasible solutions that respond to the emerging issues.

When individual differences manifest in the workplace and beyond, communication experts focus on the personalities of the affected individuals. For instance, elements such as cultural beliefs and practices might be responsible for the nature of individual responses towards various outcomes in their immediate environment. However, individual differences can also be triggered by contrasting goals and expectations that influence people’s perspectives towards work (Hocker& Wilmot, 2018). Regardless of the context, individual differences should be solved by exposing the conflicting parties to an environment where their issues can be heard and aligned with the need to achieve the desired outcome.

According to the systems theory, evaluating individual differences should focus on the interaction patterns and their relations with other people in their surroundings. In the workplace, Human Resource (HR) managers should evaluate how the conflicting employees perceive the organization and the impact of their attitudes on their productivity (Coleman, Deutsch,& Marcus, 2014). Likewise, individuals should focus on the roles of each person in a relationship and their contribution towards the realization of desired goals and objectives in the workplace. From this realization, accomplishing these outcomes enable individuals to identify any underlying issues that interfere with the quality of their interactions.

Communication behaviors and individual differences contribute towards interpersonal conflict by exposing people to a challenging environment that limits their interactions and understanding. At any given time, conflicting parties should examine their communication behaviors and their contribution to the interpersonal conflict. Likewise, individual differences can be solved by acknowledging the contrasting beliefs and values influenced by cultural background and exposure to different world traditions. From this realization, identifying the issues that threaten the nature of relations between individuals should focus on how the parties can improve their communication experience.




Coleman, P., Deutsch, M., & Marcus, C. (Eds.). (2014). The handbook of conflict resolution: Theory and practice (3rd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Chapters 7, 10, 12, 17, and 33.

Collisson, B. (2014). Failing to see eye to eye: The role of the self in conflict misperception. North American Journal of Psychology, 16(2), 193–200.

Hocker, J. L., & Wilmot, W. W. (2018). Interpersonal conflict (10th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Available in the Courseroom via the VitalSource Bookshelf link.Chapters 1, 6, and 8.


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Interpersonal Conflict . (2021, November 10). The Studypool . Retrieved July 19, 2024, from
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