Results

Fifty-three descriptions of effective resolution of conflict (felt especially GOOD) and 53 descriptions of ineffective resolutions of conflict (felt especially BAD) *ere obtained. These were provided by 57 different individuals. Some individuals provided only one example. The response rate was about 70 percent of the total available population.

The written descriptions were then coded into one of the five methods of conflict resolution pro-Posed by Blake and Mouton (1964). (1) Withdrawing— easier to refrain than to retreat from an argument; silence is golden. "See no evil, hear no evil, speak no (2) Smoothing—play down the differences and emphasize common interests; issues that might cause divisions or hurt feelings are not discussed. (3)

Compromising—splitting the difference, bargaining, search for an intermediate position. Better half a loaf than none at all; no one loses but no one wins. (4) Forcing—a win-lose situation; participants are antagonists, competitors, not collaborators. Fixed positions, polarization. Creates a victor and a vanquished. (5) Confrontation-Problem Solving—open exchange of information about the conflict or problem as each sees it, and a working through of their differences to reach a solution that is optimal to both. Both can win.

Table 1 presents the method of conflict resolution associated with effective resolution (left half of Table 1) and ineffective resolution (right half of Table 1). Considering the left half of the table, Confrontation-Problem Solving was the most common method for effective resolution (58.5%), followed by Forcing (24.5%), and Compromise (11.3%). The prominence of Confrontation as an effective method is consistent with the earlier study (Burke, 1969a) but the value for Forcing was higher than expected. When these 13 cases are considered as a group, 11 of them are similar in that the party providing the written description benefited as a result of the Forcing. That is. Forcing was perceived as an effective method of resolving conflict by the victor, but not by the vanquished.

Moving to the right half of Table 1, Forcing was the most commonly used method for ineffective resolution, followed in second place by Withdrawal with only 9.4 percent. The vast majority of individuals pro-

Table 1 Methods Associated with Effective and Ineffective Conflict Resolution
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