LIVE PROJECT “CONFLICT MANAGEMENT”Company Name: Infosys Technologies
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I would like to express my sincere gratitude to myfaculty guide Mrs.P.V.L.Ramana for her kind cooperationand guidance in this live project and for her helpingsupport and valuable suggestions at every stage of this liveproject. This will surely help in boosting my career infuture and will certainly stand in good position in myfuture academic pursuits. Last but not the least I would like to thanksINC for supporting me to complete my projectsuccessfully.
CONTENTS1. COMPANY PROFILE2. INTRODUCTION3. CONFLICT MANAGEMENT4. STRATEGIES FOR CONFLICT MANAGEMENT5. THE CONFLICT MANAGEMENT PROCESS6. ROLE CONFLICT –Impact on organizations commitment7. APPROACH TO HANDLE EMPLOYEE CONFLICT MANAGEMENT8. DO’S AND DONT’S
Company ProfileInfosys Technologies Ltd. (NASDAQ: INFY) was started in 1981 by seven people withUS$ 250. Today, Infosys is a global leader in the "next generation" of IT and consultingwith revenues of over US$ 4 billion.Infosys defines, designs and delivers technology-enabled business solutions that help Global2000 companies win in a Flat World. Infosys also provides a complete range of services byleveraging there domain and business expertise and strategic alliances with leadingtechnology providers.Infosys service offerings span business and technology consulting, application services,systems integration, product engineering, custom software development, maintenance, re-engineering, independent testing and validation services, IT infrastructure services andbusiness process outsourcing.Infosys pioneered the Global Delivery Model (GDM), which emerged as a disruptive forcein the industry leading to the rise of offshore outsourcing. The GDM is based on theprinciple of taking work to the location where the best talent is available, where it makes thebest economic sense, with the least amount of acceptable risk.Infosys has a global footprint with over 40 offices and development centers in India, China,Australia, the Czech Republic, Poland, the UK, Canada and Japan. Infosys has over 91,000employees.Infosys takes pride in building strategic long-term client relationships. Over 97% of thererevenues come from existing customers.
History of Infosys • 1981: Founded. • 1983: Moved its headquarters to Bangalore, the capital of Karnataka • 1987: Got its first foreign client, Data Basics Corporation from the United States • 1992: Opened its first overseas sales office in Boston. • 1993: Became a public limited company in India with an initial public offering of Rs. 13 crores. • 1996: First office in Europe in Milton Keynes, UK • 1997: Office in Toronto, Canada • 1999: Listed on Nasdaq. • 1999: Attained a SEI-CMM Level 5 ranking and became the first Indian company to be listed on NASDAQ • 2000: Opened offices in France and Hong Kong • 2001: Opened offices in United Arab Emirates and Argentina • 2002: Opened new offices in Netherlands, Singapore and Switzerland. • 2002: Business World named Infosys "Indias Most Respected Company". • 2002: Started Progeon, its BPO (business process outsourcing) subsidiary • 2003: Acquired 100% equity of Expert Information Services Pty Limited, Australia (Expert) and changed the name to Infosys Australia Pty Limited. • 2004: Set up Infosys Consulting Inc., U.S. consulting subsidiary in California, U.S. • 2006: Became the first Indian company to ring the NASDAQ Stock Market Opening Bell • 2006: August 20, N. R. Narayana Murthy retired from his position as the executive chairman • 2006: Acquired the 23% stake Citibank had in its BPO offshoot Progeon, making it a wholly owned subsidiary of Infosys and changed the name to Infosys BPO Ltd. • 2006: December, became the first Indian company to make it to Nasdaq-100 • 2007: April 13, Nandan Nilekani stepped down as CEO and made way for Kris Gopalakrishnan to occupy his chair effective June 2007 • 2007: July 25, Infosys bags multi-million dollar outsourcing contract with Royal Philips Electronics in the area Finance & Accounting services strengthening its European operations. • 2007: September, Infosys establishes a wholly-owned Latin American subsidiary, Infosys Technologies S. de R. L. de C. V., and opens its first software development center in Latin America in the city of Monterrey, Mexico. • 2008: Agreed to buy British consultancy Axon Group Plc for 407 million pounds ($753 million) 
Conflict ManagementDefinitionA team is a small group of people with complementary skills who are committed to acommon purpose, performance goals, and approach for which they hold themselvesmutually accountable.1 Although student teams may not satisfy all the requirements of thedefinition, the degree to which they do often determines their effectiveness.Rationale"Students do not come to school with all the social skills they need to collaborateeffectively with others. Therefore, teachers need to teach the appropriate communication,leadership, trust, decision making, and conflict management skills to students and providethe motivation to use these skills in order for groups to function effectively."2 Faculty musttake responsibility to help students develop their skills to participate on and lead teams. Conflict is an inevitable occurrence in projects as in life. The really important question ishow we choose to address conflicts as they arise. Historically, perhaps even innately, mostpeople immediately interpret conflict as negatively weighted — as bad. Many people alsofind that they instinctively hesitate to engage in conflict, often searching for a path toavoidance. Over the last 30 years or so, much research has been done around the topic ofconflict, and in that time, much of our view has shifted away from conflict as innatelynegative toward a more neutral view, in which the impact of the conflict becomes thedefining factor in any judgment of good or bad. IntroductionStudents bring different ideas, goals, values, beliefs and needs to their teams and thesedifferences are a primary strength of teams. These same differences inevitably lead toconflict, even if the level of conflict is low. Since conflict is inevitable, one of the ways inwhich faculty members can help students improve their abilities to function onmultidisciplinary teams is to work with them to develop their understanding of conflict andtheir capabilities to manage and resolve conflict.•What is conflict and conflict management?•Why learn more about conflict and conflict management?•How do people respond to conflict?•What modes do people use to address conflict?•What factors can affect our conflict modes?•How might you select your conflict management style?•How might you apply this information?
What is conflict?Defintions vary, depending on the source of the definition. Psychologists define conflict inthe perspective of intra-mind differences. Sociologists tend to define conflict as differencesbetween the interests of people or groups, and so it goes. When we examine the commonelements in almost all of these various definitions, we find that a definition of conflict canbe reduced to: “Conflict occurs when there are two or more competing responses to a singleevent.” (Cummings, Long, and Lewis 1983) This sort of impact-neutral definition allows usto focus on the context and sources of conflict rather than exclusively on the result orimpact of the conflict.Cummings, Long, and Lewis, in their 1983 book, Managing Communication inOrganizations, suggest six contexts for conflict. 1. Intrapersonal - the internal, mental struggle to select from among alternatives. 2. Interpersonal - differences between individuals 3. Intragroup - differences between members of a group pursuing a similar corporate goal 4. Intergroup - differences between groups with competing goals 5. Intraorganizational - generalized differences in goals or perceptions of various factions within an organization 6. Interorganizational - differences between organizations (companies or governments) competing for a similar goal or to advance competing ideologiesHans Thaimhain and David Wilemon studied and identified seven potential sources ofconflicts in projects, which they went on to correlate with the various phases of the projectlife cycle (nitiation, planning, execution, and closure). The seven sources of conflict include(in order of intensity): • Schedule conflict • Conflict of priorities • Resource conflict • Technical conflict • Conflict over administration • Personality conflict • Cost conflict •
What is conflict management?Conflict may be defined as a struggle or contest between people with opposing needs, ideas,beliefs, values, or goals. Conflict on teams is inevitable; however, the results of conflictare not predetermined. Conflict might escalate and lead to nonproductive results, or conflictcan be beneficially resolved and lead to quality final products. Therefore, learning tomanage conflict is integral to a high-performance team. Although very few people golooking for conflict, more often than not, conflict results because of miscommunicationbetween people with regard to their needs, ideas, beliefs, goals, or values. Conflictmanagement is the principle that all conflicts cannot necessarily be resolved, but learninghow to manage conflicts can decrease the odds of nonproductive escalation. Conflictmanagement involves acquiring skills related to conflict resolution, self-awareness aboutconflict modes, conflict communication skills, and establishing a structure for managementof conflict in your environment.How do people respond to conflict? Fight or flight?Physiologically we respond to conflict in one of two ways—we want to “get away from theconflict” or we are ready to “take on anyone who comes our way.” Think for a momentabout when you are in conflict. Do you want to leave or do you want to fight when aconflict presents itself? Neither physiological response is good or bad—it’s personalresponse. What is important to learn, regardless of our initial physiological response toconflict, is that we should intentionally choose our response to conflict.Whether we feel like we want to fight or flee when a conflict arises, we can deliberatelychoose a conflict mode. By consciously choosing a conflict mode instead of to conflict, weare more likely to productively contribute to solving the problem at hand.
STRATEGIES FOR CONFLICT MANAGEMENTAs we begin to consider specific strategies for managing conflict, it is appropriate and usefulto revisit the decision-making process model. In his book, Effective Project Management,Third Edition, Robert Wysocki describes six phases in decision-making. First is SituationDefinition in which the situation is investigated and clarified. Next, there is SituationDecision Generation where the team identifies and accumulates alternatives. The Ideas toAction phase is next, when the team defines and agrees on criteria for evaluating andselecting among the alternatives. Following the Ideas to Action phase is the Decision ActionPlan phase in which the team determines how and when to implement the selectedalternative. Next, Decision Evaluation Planning phase provides a learning opportunity forthe team through the examination of lessons learned relative to the executed decision and itsresults. Decision Evaluation Planning also involves the development of plans forimprovement in the future. Finally, Evaluation of Outcome and Process looks at quality ofdecision outcomes. This decision process model provides an excellent foundation for anystrategy of conflict management.The most common elements in any conflict management strategy are the early recognitionof the conflict and keeping attention focused between the conflicted parties. Both of theseelements are important for the management of either functional or dysfunctional conflict.Clifford Gray and Gary Larson, in their book, Project Management: The ManagerialProcess, Second Edition, observe that, “The demarcation between functional anddysfunctional conflict is neither clear nor precise. The distinguishing criterion is how theconflict affects project performance, not how individuals feel, as long as the disagreementfurthers the objectives of the project. Then the conflict is functional.” On this basis then, allapproaches to conflict management must seek early identification of the conflict, earlyevaluation of the impact of the conflict on the project, and specific plans for encouragingfunctional conflict or managing dysfunctional conflict.Larson and Gray’s list of five strategies for managing dysfunctional conflict provides a goodsummary of approaches. • Mediation. Based on a search for common ground, this strategy provides an opportunity for negotiation between the parties in conflict. The goal is to identify multiple possible alternatives and to mutually select one that is acceptable to all involved parties and in the interest of project objectives. This strategy is based on the confrontation approach described earlier. • Arbitration. This strategy requires the project manager to provide a safe and productive opportunity for the conflicted parties to air their disagreements. After careful attention and fully listening to each party, the project manager should formulate, define, and provide a solution to the parties. This strategy is based on the forcing approach to conflict described earlier. Arbitration can often be effectively •
• • combined with mediation by forcing an initial conflict solution and then allowing the parties to negotiate to a more mutually acceptable alternative. • Control. Based on the smoothing approach described earlier, this strategy seeks to bring tension and emotions down to a level at which productive discussion and negotiation can • • occur. Humor is often an effective tool, as well as the use of temporary breaks or time-outs in the discussions between conflicted parties. • Acceptance. The decision can be made that the conflict consequences are negligible relative to project objectives and, therefore, require no action. This strategy carries significant risk of later escalation and should be combined with specific plans for monitoring the situation to ensure that the conflict remains at an acceptable level. (This strategy is obviously similar to the PMBOK Guide® risk management strategy of active acceptance.) • Elimination. Finally, the elimination strategy is reserved for those conflicts that have become so dysfunctional that the project can no longer tolerate any impacts from them. Often a last resort, elimination involves the removal of the conflicted parties from involvement with the project. What factors can affect our conflict modes?Some factors that can impact how we respond to conflict are listed below withexplanations of how these factors might affect us.• Gender Some of us were socialized to use particular conflict modes because of our gender. For example, some males, because they are male, were taught “always stand up to someone, and, if you have to fight, then fight.” If one was socialized this way he will be more likely to use assertive conflict modes versus using cooperative modes.• Self-concept How we think and feel about ourselves affect how we approach conflict. Do we think our thoughts, feelings, and opinions are worth being heard by the person with whom we are in conflict?• Expectations Do we believe the other person or our team wants to resolve the conflict?• Situation Where is the conflict occurring, do we know the person we are in conflict with, and is the conflict personal or professional?• Position (Power) What is our power status relationship, (that is, equal, more, or less) with the person with whom we are in conflict?• Practice Practice involves being able to use all five conflict modes effectively, being able to determine what conflict mode would be most effective to resolve the conflict, and the ability to change modes as necessary while engaged in conflict.• Determining the best mode Through knowledge about conflict and through practice we develop a “conflict management understanding” and can, with ease and limited energy, determine what conflict mode to use with the particular person with whom we are in conflict.• Communication skills The essence of conflict resolution and conflict management is the ability to communicate effectively. People who have and use effective communication will resolve their conflicts with greater ease and success.Life experiences As mentioned earlier, we often practice the conflict modes we sawour primary caretaker(s) use unless we have made a conscious choice as adults tochange or adapt our conflict styles. Some of us had great role models teach us to manageour conflicts and others of us had less-than-great role models. Our life experiences,
both personal and professional, have taught us to frame conflict as either somethingpositive that can be worked through or something negative to be avoided and ignoredat all costs. THE CONFLICT MANAGEMENT PROCESSThe process of conflict consists of five stages.Ways People Deal With ConflictThere is no one best way to deal with conflict. It depends on the current situation. Here arethe major ways that people use to deal with conflict.1. Avoid it. Pretend it is not there or ignore it.a. Use it when it simply is not worth the effort to argue. Usually this approach tendsto worsen the conflict over time.2. Accommodate it. Give in to others, sometimes to the extent that you compromiseyourself.a. Use this approach very sparingly and infrequently, for example, in situationswhen you know that you will have another more useful approach in the verynear future. Usually this approach tends to worsen the conflict over time, andcauses conflicts within yourself.3. Competing. Work to get your way, rather than clarifying and addressing the issue.Competitors love accommodators.a. Use when you have a very strong conviction about your position.4. Compromising. Mutual give-and-take.a. Use when the goal is to get past the issue and move on.
5. Collaborating. Focus on working together.a. Use when the goal is to meet as many current needs as possible by using mutualresources. This approach sometimes raises new mutual needs.b. Use when the goal is to cultivate ownership and commitment.ROLE CONFLICT – IMPACT ON ORGANISATIONAL COMMITMENTConflict affects employee behaviors, work outcomes, reduce creativeness and innovationand organizational commitment. Intraindividual conflicts are (role conflict, goal conflict andfrustration) significantly related to commitment, and that the higher the levels of roleconflict, goal conflict and frustration, the lower the levels of commitment. Role conflict (work. family and society) is the most important factor of intra-individualconflict in influencing employees’ commitment. When the employee feels a mismatchbetween his/her formal work role, family role and society role, he/she is likely to bedepressed, because he/she is not able to meet the needs and expectations of all these partiesat the same time. The level of depression will increase as the gap between different parties’needs and expectation increases. Therefore, he/she tends to show lower levels ofcommitment toward the organization, which is one of the parties that causing the conflict.Role conflict is significantly and negatively related to affective commitment, while beingsignificantly and positively related to continuance commitment. Simply, the greater the roleconflict reduces employee’s job satisfaction & organizational commitment.Goal conflict puts pressure on an employee, because he/she has to select between twomutually exclusive alternatives. If the employee often experiences this pressure in his/herwork, he is likely to be stressed and anxious; therefore, he/she may show lower commitmentlevels toward the organization.
That is the higher the goal conflict, the lower the organizational commitment.Frustration has a significant and negative relationship with organizational commitment.When the employee is prevented from achieving a certain objective, or satisfying a certainneed, he/she is likely to be depressed, demotivated and unsatisfied. Accordingly, he/shetends to show lower level of organizational commitment, as he/she gets frustrated.COMMUNICATION SYSTEM IN ORGANISATIONS LEADS TO CONFLICTCommunication system between manager and employee can lead to conflict.The manager can counter conflict in supervisor-subordinate relationship, in peer orintergroup relationship, and in relationship with senior management. The way in whichtheses people related through communication system can lead to conflict. There are:a) Vertical conflict occurs between hierarchical levels, and commonly involves supervisors-subordinate disagreements over resources, goals, deadlines or performance results.b) Horizontal conflict occurs between people or groups at the same hierarchical level, andcommonly involves goal incompatibilities, resource scarcities or purely interpersonalfactors.c) Line staff conflict occurs between line and staff representatives, and commonly involvesdisagreements over who has authority and control over certain matters, such as personnelselection and termination practices.The more is clear the communication system the less conflict exists which leads to higherthe organizational commitment. Less communication between employees and managers can
lead to three factors of intraindividual conflicts. This will lead to low performance, jobdissatisfaction and reduce organizational commitment.APPRACH TO HANDLE EMPLOYEE CONFLICT MANAGEMENTManagers should: *Listen carefully to employees to prevent misunderstanding. *Monitor employees work to assist them to understand and coordinate their actions. *Encourage employees to approach you when they cannot solve difficulties with co- workers on their own. *Clear the air with regular meetings that give employees a chance to discuss their grievances. *Provide a suggestion box, check it frequently, and personally reply to all singed suggestions. Offer as mach information as possible about decisions to minimize confusion and resentment. *Use employee surveys to identify potential conflicts that have not yet surfaced.Some dos and donts If you’re faced with a situation in which an employee seems implacably opposed to everything you’re trying to accomplish, you might be asking, "What can I do?" Here are some suggestions. Of course, each situation is different, so you have to devise a strategy on a case-by-case basis. Dont ignore the situation for too long While it’s sometimes wise to let a person blow off steam and sulk for a couple of days, don’t let things get out of hand. Once you’ve decided an employee is not just temporarily upset about a decision that didn’t go his or her way, you need to act.
Do confront the employee, politelyBeing direct can be very effective. You might start the conversation along these lines:“Judging from your behavior the past couple of weeks, you’re really angry at me. Tellme about it.” Then shut up and listen. You have to maintain your poise—resist theurge to get in a tit-for-tat debate on the person’s grievances.Dont overcompensateOvercompensation can take two forms. First, you could spend all your timeapologizing for things that weren’t your fault, acting unnaturally chummy and tryingto bribe the employee by agreeing to his or her wishes, whether or not they makebusiness sense. The second type of overcompensating comes in when you decide to return hostilitywith hostility and exclude the employee from project discussions or the bestassignments.Do ask the employee about his or her reactionA long time ago, I was promoted to a job that four of my new direct reports had alsointerviewed for. Three of them wished me luck and worked hard to make me (and theteam) successful. One guy, however, just couldn’t get past being passed over. When I Asked him about it, he said, “It’s nothing personal, but I’m never going to stopthinking that I should have had your job.” In reply, I said, “Well, I’m not goinganywhere, so what are you going to do?” He ended up transferring to another groupand getting on with his career.Remember that, at some level, this is the employee’s problem. Don’t let that personoff the hook. After all, no one has the right to demand that they only work for peoplethey like.Dont forget to look at your role in thisUp to this point, we’ve been assuming that the employee has some groundless reasonfor not liking you: You didn’t approve a funding request, or you turned down a petproject. However, what if you’re the one who’s been acting like a jerk, and theemployee is just responding to your behavior? In that case, the employee could bedoing you a favor by warning you of the consequences of continuing to act in such afashion.Do manage your own expectationsTry not to have any illusions about this kind of situation. In most cases, the best youcan hope for is that the person will return to behaving professionally. It probablywon’t mean that you’ll end up entertaining at each other’s houses.