Very interesting article about conflicts in the workplace:
- Tension between two groups might be a symptom of conflict so intense that it impedes working together. Alternatively, it might be a sign that people are doing the hard work of cooperation.
- Good interpersonal relationships might be a sign that people feel that the costs of cooperation are worth it. Alternatively, good relationships may be a sign that people are carefully avoiding cooperation in order to avoid straining relationships.
This is something I've had a hard time understanding and accepting. For the longest time, I have been (and unfortunately still am) trying to avoid conflicting situations, mistaking them for a sign that something is going wrong.
The truth is, whether with colleagues, managers, clients (and even with your significant other!), conflicts can and should be a sign of a relationship moving forward in the right direction. One should not be afraid of getting into the right fights at the right times. Now let's practice what I preach and go argue with someone :-)