AN ASSESSMENT OF CONFLICT MANAGEMENT PROCESS IN THE PUBLIC ORGANIZATION

ABSTRACT

This research examined conflict management process in the public organisations with special reference to Federal Health Laboratory. The research adopted survey research design. Data were gathered through primary source with the aid of a well structured questionnaire. Simple random sampling technique was adopted in the selection of sample, this was used to eliminate biasness in the selection process of the respondents.

Data garnered were presented on table using percentage and the formulated hypotheses were analysed with the used of Chi-square statistical method. The result of the analysis shows that lack of team work among staff and management of the Health Ministry it the major cause of conflict, it was also found that conflict management is necessary to improve work performance, quality and productivity in the public organization.

Based on the conlusion of the analysis recommendations were proffered to the staff and management of federal health laboratory and public organizations as a whole.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE RESEARCH

In every industrial society, there are three main industrial relations actors or three parties and the first two of these actors are the employers (management) and labour (employees) continues interaction between these parties could bring both agreement and disagreement or conflict. This is of fact the two have partly congruent and partly divergent interest, it is in this vain that we often conclude that conflicts ubiquitous.

Banjoko (2002) stated that “conflict is an inevitable element of any labour management relationship”, and Gray (1994) stated also that conflict is ubiquitous and likely found in most human civilization and across historical periods.

Fagana (2002) defines conflict as a situation of disagreement between two parties. In the context of industry where this work is focusing, there parties are identified, the workers (labour), management (employers), and the state.

Industrial conflict arises between as much as within the three main actors, so that disagreement between workers and their employers exemplify industrial conflict to the extent that the issues at conflict are related to employment terms and conditions.

Conventionally, there are two forms of industrial conflict (Otobo, 1987) organized and unorganized conflict is likely to form part of a conscious strategy of change in the situation. This conflict occur at the collective or group level, implies that the employers would feel a large amount of workers involved and the effect.

On the other hand, unorganized conflict, the worker respondents to the situation in the only way open to him as an individual, usually by withdrawing from the source of discontent, sabotage and indiscipline.

Given the reality of work relationship in the content of this work (Process of conflict management) means seeking ways of coping monitoring, controlling and minimizing the undesirable tensions and disagreements, and its unpleasant consequences.

For any organization to be effective and efficient in achieving its goals, and the people in the organization needs to have a shared vision of what they are striving to achieve, a clear objective for each team/department and individuals. You also need ways of recognizing and resolving conflict amongst people so that these conflicts do not become so serious and co-operation impossible. Conflict management is the process of planning to avoid conflict where possible and organizing to resolve conflict where it does happen, as rapidly as possible.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE RESEARCH PROBLEM

The problem of this study or research can be viewed in different directions such as:

(i) Inadequate communication amongst both parties involve in conflict.

(ii) Competency of the representative of both parties to adequately fairly follow due process.

(iii) Unfavorable environment for the conflict management processes.

(iv) It should be noted that people are dynamic and have different personal perspective and ideas could also be a problem to the conflict management process.

1.3 PURPOSE OF THE RESEARCH STUDY

The purpose of this study is to clearly examine the method or mechanism used by both management (employers) and labour (employees) in resolving conflict that may arise between them.

(i) It should help in the understanding and identifying the common causes of conflict.

(ii) To examine how to reduce conflict in the organization since it cannot be completely eradicated.

(iii) To examine how to manage conflict

(iv) To examine those reasons why conflict is inherent in a public organization.

1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS

(i) Can conflict in workplace lead to achievement of organizational goals.

(ii) How will conflict management processes bring about improve productivity, performance and creativity between the two parties/actors?

(iii) Why is conflict inherent in public organization?

(iv) Is there a relationship between “competition” and conflict.

1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES

HO: Effective communication does not minimize conflict between management and employees.

H1: Effective communication minimizes conflict between management and employees.

HO: Agitation for increase in salary and allowance is not a source of conflict.

HO: Agitation for increase in salary and allowance is a source of conflict.

HO: Lack of teamwork among staff is not a source of workplace conflict.

HO: Lack of teamwork among staff is a source of workplace conflict.

1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

(i) The importance of this study is to know the difference between “competition and conflict”

(ii) It is also important for the management to know about conflict management.

(iii) It encourages management to iron out difference through dialogue, and other areas of disagreement in a way to reach compromise and enthrone industrial harmony.

(iv) It reduce unnecessary strike action.

1. 7 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE RESEARCH

This research is based or designed to cover the labour management relationship with particular reference to the conflict management processes in the Health Ministry.

But, due to the fact that it is impossible to get in touch with all the members involve, this researcher faces certain limitations such as:

1. Unavailability of vital information which was advised to treat with secrecy and confidential by the board of directors (management).

2. Could be faced with the unwillingness of workers in the organization to the researcher due to on security

3. Financial constraints associated with the secondary source of collecting data.