Reviewed Talal H., Grayson H., and Christy C., and Joshua Smith for Human Behavior in Organizations class taught by Dr. Rita Smith.
Reviewed by Goodreads.com
Coleman and Ferguson explain how power dynamics function, with step-by-step guidance to determining your standing in a conflict and identifying and applying the strategies that will lead to the best resolution. Drawing on the authors’ years of research and consulting experience, the book gives readers effective strategies for negotiating disputes at all levels of an organization.
For the complete review click on the following link: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20256588-making-conflict-work#other_reviews
Reviewed by Craig Runde for ACResolution Magazine
In almost every conflict course I’ve attended or taught, someone eventually asks the question, “But what happens if the conflict is with your boss?” The question is just as applicable for any conflict with your subordinate. It is a very reasonable question because most courses and techniques for workplace conflict are focused on conflicts between peers. The additional complexities that come with power differentials had not been adequately addressed until the arrival of Making Conflict Work by Peter Coleman and Robert Ferguson.
Readers will appreciate the examples and stories the authors provide of various power-conflict traps, which can keep people from seeing and using more effective approaches.
A practical guide intended to aid in the alleviation of everyday workplace conflicts.
Coleman (Director/Columbia Univ. Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution; The Five Percent: Finding Solutions to Seemingly Impossible Conflicts, 2011, etc.) and executive coach Ferguson base their discussion of conflict on research studies of power relations and how these are shaped not just by specific issues, but also by personalities. “Conflict is not an inherently bad thing,” they write. “It is a natural, fundamental, and pervasive part of life.”
For the complete review click on the following link: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/peter-t-coleman/making-conflict-work/
In October’s collaboration with the Advanced Consortium for Cooperation, Conflict and Complexity, Dr. Peter Coleman and Dr. Robert Ferguson discuss their new book Making Conflict Work: Harnessing the Power of Disagreement. To listen to the complete interview click on the following link: http://www.studentaffairs.columbia.edu/wkcr/audio/making-conflict-work
Posted on September 12, 2014
One of the most consequential blind spots in popular management literature on conflict resolution is the failure to adequatel address situations of unequal power. Yet reasarch has demonstrated that power differentials signifigantly impact the way in which disputants handle conflict. In their book “Making Conflict Work: Harnessing the Power of Disagreement,” Columbia Professor Peter T. Coleman and Psychologist Robert Ferguson seek to address this gap through a theoretically rich, yet surprisingly practical, contribution to the field.
For Roi’s complete book review, go to http://roiword.wordpress.com/2014/09/12/book-review-conflict-meets-power-in-the-workplace/
“An excellent workbook-like guide based on the authors’ seven strategies (that is, ways to deal with conflict): ‘pragmatic benevolence,’ ‘cultivated support,’ ‘constructive dominance,’ ‘strategic appeasement,’ ‘selective autonomy,’ ‘effective adaptivity,’ and ‘principled rebellion’…their concluding remarks underscore the book’s purpose: ‘Know yourself better in conflict.'”—Booklist, STARRED review
“Coleman, professor of psychology and education at Columbia University’s Teachers College, and Ferguson, a psychologist and executive coach, examine the challenges and opportunities inherent in conflicts with authority figures and subordinates, and provide a practical guide to redirecting energies from conflict toward the achievement of goals. Grounded in more than 15 years of research, Coleman and Ferguson’s findings offer insight into the strategies and skills necessary for managing work disputes and show how to make conflict work for you instead of against you. They identify power-conflict traps and study the role of dominance, the “most common conflict-management strategy employed by power holders [which] can backfire” on the one in charge and demoralize the dominated. They also discuss problem-solving techniques such as pragmatic benevolence, strategic appeasement, selective autonomy, and principled rebellion. The authors include helpful self-development checklists and self- and organizational assessments throughout. Full of valuable advice, this book will help readers develop better strategies for workplace disagreements.”-Publishers Weekly