Intragroup Conflict Transformation: How Task Conflicts Transform into Unproductive Conflicts

Awasty, N and Sinha, R (2015) Intragroup Conflict Transformation: How Task Conflicts Transform into Unproductive Conflicts. Academy of Management Proceedings, 2015 (1). ISSN 0065-0668

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Interpersonal conflict is a ubiquitous feature in organizations that have cross-functional project teams. Intragroup conflicts about task ideas have been found to have positive benefits for team decision making particularly when they do not co-occur with other forms of destructive conflicts. In this paper we examine the conditions under which task conflicts are likely to transform into destructive forms of conflicts such as relationship and process conflicts. We explore the role of mild negative affect display in conflict transformation, particularly the role of expression of irritability during group discussions about the task. Our moderated-mediated model is supported and we find that task conflict leads to higher irritability expression when group members vary on conscientiousness and openness to experience. Task conflicts transform into process and relationship conflict when groups have a large proportion of their members expressing irritability during discussions. The likelihood that high levels of irritability will results in process and relationship conflict is contingent on the conflict management style of group members, wherein groups high on obliging style of conflict management are able to better manage negative emotions thereby reducing the escalation of negative affect into destructive forms of conflict.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Organizational Behaviour
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2023 15:00
Last Modified: 24 Nov 2023 15:00

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