The basis of the functioning of any company is labour relations. This is a legal relationship between employers and employees that determine their functioning and the ways they perform certain functions (O’Leary, 2017). If someone performs work or offers services on specific conditions in exchange for monetary payment, this is called wage labour. Employees and employers have mutual rights and obligations under the terms of the employment relationship. The ability of employees to participate in the implementation of laws and regulations on labour and social security is affected by work-related relationships. Employee satisfaction in a company is an integral part of its success. However, there are problems within the organization, especially during a long working day, and disputes between employees themselves. Conflicts between senior promoted employees, Habib and Dave, over how to evaluate their junior employees, Nick, Ann, Lucy, and Zoey, are covered in this case study. Habib and Dave both got promoted internally.
Conflict at Neptune plc
In Neptune plc, the conflict is typical of every workplace in that it arises as a result of interpersonal connections between employees at both high and low levels (Deakin and Hoel, 2020; Dundon and Wilkinson, 2020). Because power draws conflict in every organization, conflict is unavoidable; what distinguishes it from other competitions is how the dispute is managed. According to conflict theory, it is believed that society is always in a state of conflict due to the fight for finite resources, which was created by Karl Marx (Smith, 2017; Whyte, 2018). Rather than agreement and compliance, conflict theory asserts that dominance and power are responsible for maintaining social order (Scheff, 2019). According to conflict theory, people with money and power attempt to keep their positions by whatever means necessary, most notably by oppressing the poor and helpless (Corr, 2019). According to a fundamental principle of conflict theory, individuals and organizations within society will cooperate to increase their wealth and power.
As seen in the case study, Dave and Habib delegate essential corporate tasks to specific team members while ignoring the other team member. Moreover, they miss the meetings between these individuals (Blokdyk, 2019). Mistrust has arisen as a result, and the two factions are now at odds. Many issues must be addressed in the Neptune PLC, mainly when dealing with those who work in or near the human resource management department (Dundon and Wilkinson, 2020). Conflicts are undesirable in any organization, but particularly in Neptune. Disagreements among employees have negative consequences, particularly for the company’s production and the level of employee motivation (Toluei and Tahririan, 2022). Long hours at work need a great deal of grit and a lot of positive pressure on the employees, while disagreements might have the opposite effect on the employees. Example: In the case study, senior employees Habib and Dave made fun of other workers. Mercy is completely unacceptable under any circumstances. Conflicts inside the organization are exacerbated as a result of this situation. A vivid sign of employees competing but not providing their best effort in production in the Neptune firm may be seen in the conflicts inside that organization.
There is a power theory in the workplace that defines how conflicts are addressed in the workplace. The name Karl Marx and his Marxism are identical to one another (Pradella, 2020). Essentially, it argues that there are two classes in every society: the class of the Rich (Haves), who own the means of production and are the dominant economic class, and the class of the Poor (Have-nots), who are exploited, socialized, and politically controlled by the course of the Rich on a variety of levels (Baca, 2021). It influences, suppresses, and ultimately prevents the weaker classes of society. The governing type is referred to as just that: the ruling class. It uses the state as a weapon to maintain its dominant position. It uses political and administrative authorities to strengthen its grip on society. At every stage of social history, Marxists claim that the class of the wealthy (the propertied classes who control the means of production and distribution in society) has always had political and economic power (Geras, 2020). In the Slave Stage, the masters used their ability to dominate and exploit the enslaved people.
In contrast, the feudal lords used power to dominate and control the serfs, peasants, and land labor in the Feudal Society. In the current Industrial Society, the capitalists use the ability to dominate and exploit the proletariats (Zuboff, 2019). Throughout history, the affluent elite has exercised and maintained economic, social, intellectual, and political domination over the whole of society (Bryant, 2019). This ruling class can use ideology, political persuasion, leadership structure, intellectual power, or morality to obtain the favor of the non-property class or other classes to maintain its domination in society. However, Marx and his conventional supporters think that power is always held and employed by the economically dominating type of the wealthy (Singer, 2018). Some other academics feel that while power is always maintained and used by a class, this class may be any group that controls society via several methods.
The Class Theory of Power holds that power is always maintained and exercised by a class of individuals in each civilization and that this is true in all societies. Several factors that the business has on its workers, according to this concept, contribute to the firm’s class holding of power being clearly defined. Intimidates younger workers and favors others not based on their abilities but on who is qualified based on experience level (Boettke et al., 2020). Because of this kind of discrimination, numerous employees have decided to leave the firm. Consequently, employees are also unsatisfied with how they are treated in the workplace, depending on their position (Palmer, 2019). As reported in the case study, Sarah decided to resign, and Lucy, the second-highest performer, is also considering doing so. Lucy is dissatisfied with a lack of respect and the conflict between being needed when there is vital work to be done and not being invited to team meetings, and generally being neglected to the point where she believes she is being mistreated based solely on her productivity and not on her own merits and capabilities. This situation is the most challenging experience that can be dealt with when this power paradigm is used.
According to conflict theorists, war may be either a unifier or a “cleanser” of civilizations, depending on the circumstances. According to conflict theory, war results from a pattern of cumulative and growing conflict between individuals, organizations, and the whole society (Valentin-Llopis, 2021). Amid a struggle, a civilization may become more unified in specific ways while combat between distinct groups continues on the battlefield (Karimakwenda, 2019; Moffatt, 2019). On the other hand, war can result in the elimination of a whole civilization. Not all conflict has to be violent; it may simply be a battle between individuals over their language and how they treat others. The case study depicts how the Neptune public limited company is beset by human resource management and administration challenges. Lucy and Nick’s employers, Habib and Dave, are likewise embroiled in a disagreement about their treatment of them.
Consequently, the business should search for ways to resolve this disagreement, as it is detrimental to both the firm and its employees’ productivity. In addition, the firm must ensure that all workers are treated equitably and that promotions are awarded based on merit and management experience (Ansory and Yunanto, 2018). It is possible to take further steps to guarantee that people who climb the cooperation ladder are reasonable and fair to others, hence decreasing the number of disagreements in human resource management. In addition, the firm should ensure that the employees remain productive to prevent incurring the loss that would result from having to replace them (Gerhart et al., 2019). According to the case study, if Sarah and Lucy, two of the business’s most productive employees, decide to leave, the company would suffer a severe financial setback.
As a tactic of shielding themselves from internal criticism and censure, the managers of more giant corporations are unwilling to use informal issue resolution techniques. The quantity of conflict management tasks given to managers has also been reduced, as has the level of confidence HR practitioners have in their clients’ skills (Valeeva, 2019). Consequently, due to increased workload, managers cannot commit the time required to pursue more informal means of resolving conflicts. Conflict represents a great threat in a firm’s capability to rival its competitors in the market. The situation at Neptune Plc needs to be addressed to create a better environment for work. There are various initiatives the management of the company can adopt to settle the conflict. These strategies aim at decreasing workplace conflicts and ensure that they are correctly handled to impede production or bring about destructive externalities while ensuring that the employees are treated with dignity.
The first method of conflict resolution is collaborating. Collaborating is the method used when people are both assertive and cooperative. Collaboration helps in solving conflicts and improving communication within an organization. It can be done through various methods such as joint problem solving, brainstorming, and consensus-building (Stewart and Brown, 2019). The workers can reach an agreeable resolution for all involved by working together. Collaboration also helps build trust among coworkers and can lead to improved teamwork (Dhar and Olson, 2020). Overall, collaboration is a valuable tool for resolving conflicts in an organization. A group may learn to allow each participant to contribute with the possibility of co-creating a shared solution that everyone can support. From this strategy, people from different areas can work together and can support each other in their areas of an expert (Michaelson, 2018). It also helps an organization be aware of its concerns and work together to resolve them.
Organizations should have clear communication and decision-making structures. Furthermore, collaboration should be encouraged not just among those with a vested interest in the resolution of the conflict but also with those who may have information or perspectives that can help to broaden the discussion and improve the chances for a successful solution. Ultimately, the success of collaboration depends on the willingness and ability of all parties to work together cooperatively (Klein, 2021). In the case study, employees like Dave and Habib should not see others as servants and look down on them.
An accommodating technique is one in which one party complies with the wishes or expectations of another party. They are cooperative, yet they are not aggressive (Gutub and Al-Ghamdi, 2019). When one understands that one has made a mistake on an issue, it may seem to be a decent thing to do to accept responsibility. It is less valuable when one party accommodates another to maintain peace or prevent disruption (Gafni and Charles, 2017). It, like avoidance, may result in problems that remain unaddressed (Gutub and Al-Ghamdi, 2019). Too much tolerance may result in groups in which the more assertive individuals gain control of the process and dominate most discussions.
The company’s operations Neptune should train its employees to accommodate one another and their needs. They can make the best decision possible while avoiding injuring other people (Gafni and Charles, 2017). Sarah, who is eager to leave the company, the business should make sure that she understands her function in the organization as a person rather than merely as an employee. Individual growth ensures their continued employment with the company (Vaiman et al., 2019). Neptune should train her managers to adore and accommodate every member of her employees and demonstrate how much they are appreciated (Nelson, 2018). Accommodating does not necessarily indicate that an employee who intends to leave the company, such as Sarah, should come to understand her employers, Dave and Habib. Instead, she should be listened to and given a means of voicing her concerns about corporate management.
Determine the most appropriate solution and the responsibilities each party will play in reaching a successful conclusion. There are many steps in the communication technique for managing and resolving conflict. Employees will find it simpler to speak with one another once they realize that they are all working for the same goal, achieving the company’s objectives (Philips, 2022). As a result, after investigating the matter and identifying potential solutions, all sides must agree on the appropriate course of action to resolve the issue (Kossek and Lee, 2017). And to get to an agreement on the best choice, one must first identify the options that each party can live with and then negotiate the best alternative. Find common ground on which to agree (Venzin, 2020). Determine the roles and responsibilities of each party in resolving the conflict. It is also vital to take advantage of this chance to identify the root cause of the issue and ensure that it does not recur in the future.
Nick is the group’s youngest member, and he is reprimanded for the way he conducts his business and for his ambition to one day hold a manager’s position (Bear and Pittinsky, 2022). Hence, Zoe’s criticism in the text does not appeal to Nick, the youngest group member, and should be encouraged to express their opinions. It is evident from this that the employees do not have a common understanding of their respective goals (Cetindamar Kozanoglu and Abedin, 2020). As a result, employees must be aware of their decision-making responsibilities and their role within the organization (Cabrelli, 2020). This practice ensures that the respect of employees is preserved, as does how they speak with one another, and that no one feels belittled or left out of the conversation (Cetindamar Kozanoglu and Abedin, 2020). Coworkers should be discouraged from making fun of one another’s situations, and employees in Neptune should be taught how to understand one another’s aspirations.
In conclusion, identifying the source of the dispute is essential in settling a disagreement. Establishing the cause of the conflict might assist one in gaining a better understanding of how the issue originated initially (Ojimba, 2021). It will also be useful in convincing both parties to agree on the nature of the problem. Moreover, to do so, organization must first identify the requirements that are not being met on both sides of the discussion (Ojimba, 2021). It also must ensure that everyone understands one another. Managers need to obtain as much information as possible on the other side’s point of view. In addition, they need to continually ask questions until they are confident that all of the contending parties understand the nature of the issue (Footitt, 2019). Identifying the source helps in making informed decisions in the workplace. It helps identify the person who has caused a problem and allows taking appropriate action. As much information about what happened needs to be gathered to determine the source. This can be done by speaking with people involved or by reviewing documentation.
During a conflict, the goal is not to get anyone in trouble but rather to resolve the dispute and prevent it from recurring (Solaja, 2018). When attempting to identify the source of controversy, people must be respectful of all parties involved. When determining the basis of a conflict, one should be respectful of all parties involved. The staff at Neptune are expected to establish the cause of the difficulties and find a remedy. It is essential to put workers first and ensure that their concerns are handled effectively. Workers need to feel comfortable at their work environment; recognition of worker’s commitment is also crucial in improving employee job satisfaction. For Neptune to be able to compete favorably in the market, it needs to retain its pool of employees. Losing talented employees to competitors due to internal wrangles can adversely affect the profitability of the organization. Workplace conflict represents not only a threat to the employees, but also to the firm’s ability to compete its rivals.
Therefore, different types of conflict and power require different solutions since they might have diverse outcomes. Hence, smaller and local conflicts can be resolved on a personal level, and larger-scale ones can affect the entire company and have more significant consequences. Moreover, understanding of concepts that are based on power theories and conflict theories are also of particular importance. Therefore, conflicts in a case study are discussed to guarantee that they do not negatively influence the company’s ability to produce (Gutub and Al-Ghamdi, 2019). To ensure that workers in the company, such as Nick, can work successfully with Zoe and Collins without conflict, conflict resolution tactics such as suitable methods can be implemented. This helps to ensure that they do not build hatred in their workplace.
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