WCM 610 Southern New Hampshire Organizational Conflict Discussion

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Please read all instructions and rubrics etc. Responses attached as well.

First, read Chapters 2, 3, and 4 in The Essential Workplace Conflict Handbook, regarding how diversity and inclusion (Chapter 2) and team building (Chapter 3) inform your understanding of the Define piece of the DMAIC process model. Chapter 4 moves into an examples-based consideration of the problem definition, from a narrative perspective. Also, be sure to read the DEFINE Supplementary Document.

I picked this case study:

San Antonio, TX: This site is the “cash cow” of the company, as it has the highest level of efficiency, is the company’s lowest-cost facility, and has the best overall record of performance. Its cost of operations is the lowest of all sites in the United States. However, the site is currently the target of a union-organizing drive by the Communication Workers of America. Employees pushed for an increase in wages, which was denied by management as the result of an analysis of wages in the area for employees in similar industries. This prompted some employees to pursue joining a union. Any attempt to curtail operations at the site, such as a union-busting move by the company, could create a potential legal challenge with the international union.

In your initial discussion post, address the following:

  • What elements are involved in defining the problem? Why?
  • Why is accurate use of Define so critical in successful resolution of organizational conflict?
  • How can you be sure that your Define piece is accurate?
  • What structural issues may be involved in the Define piece?
  • What unintended consequences may emerge? (In Modules Seven and Eight, you will think about the C, or Control.)
  • Why is it so important to understand diversity and inclusion when seeking to define the problem?

In responding to your peers, compare your responses to theirs, informed by your own organizational conflict. Offer your peers your unique insight on their topics based on your particular and unique organizational conflict.

Use specific examples from your own organizational conflict or the Garden Depot case study in your initial posts and your responses to other students’ posts.

To complete this assignment, review the Discussion Rubric document.

In Module One, you familiarized yourself broadly with organizational conflict as deconstructed via the DMAIC process model. You learned what DMAIC can offer in determining what an organizational conflict consists of. Finally, Module One introduced the case study materials and the requirements for the final project.

In Module Two, you will explore the Define piece of the DMAIC process model more deeply. When you engage with the D element of DMAIC, you will focus on the problem you seek to address. You can begin to move forward only when you are clear on the actual problem definition or problem statement. For example, when an organization goes through change, even positive change, stress typically results. Positive stress is known as eustress (Le Fevre, Matheny, & Kolt, 2003). Lazarus cautions: “Stress comes from any situation or circumstance that requires behavioral adjustment. Any change, either good or bad, is stressful, and whether it’s a positive or negative change, the physiological response is the same” (as cited in Colligan & Higgins, 2005, p. 91).

Eustress can cause upset and distress for anyone involved in an organization’s change situation, particularly because the changes are believed to be positive; feeling any negativity at all can make a person wonder what is wrong with him or her, causing the addition of negative stress. Returning to Module One’s consideration of change, Mitchell and Gamlem (2015) remind that “most of us have been raised to be independent,” but as adults in the workplace “we’re being told we have to be on a team” (Chapter 3, para. 4–5). Organizations rely on teams to complete work, which can in itself cause resistance in individuals who are accustomed to competing rather than collaborating. Module Two provides an overview of the Define process of DMAIC.

You will take some time to analyze how organizational values can differ in reality from what the organization states. Not all organizations have their values in written form. Even for those organizations that do, the values stated may not be met by actual behaviors. For the discussion in this module, you will practice using the Define part of the DMAIC process tool. Your work here will directly inform your understanding of Section I of your final project, as you will be able to apply what you are learning now to Section I, the Define phase of your case study. For now, you will take either your own organizational conflict or that from the Garden Depot case study, and you will focus on the Define phase, identifying the problem causing the conflict. You will also have the opportunity to apply your learning regarding the Define piece to your own professional conflict experience, and to engage with your peers in a discussion about organizational problem definition. In Module Three, you will explore the M or Measure element of the DMAIC process, allowing you to build from your foundation of Define. Also, for the first milestone, you will select the case study for your final project, which will include each phase of the DMAIC process.


Colligan, T. W., & Higgins, E. M. (2005). Workplace stress: Etiology and consequences. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 21(2), 89–97. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net

Le Fevre, M., Matheny, J., & Kolt, G. S. (2003). Eustress, distress, and interpretation in occupational stress. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 18(7), 726–744. Retrieved from http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/pdfplus/10.1108/…

Mitchell, B., & Gamlem, C. (2015). The essential workplace conflict handbook. Wayne, NJ: The Career Press, Inc.

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