The ingredients of any conflict.

Conflict is EverywhereThe ingredients of any conflict

All conflicts have similar ingredients.  They may vary in amount but most are present in some way.  

Needs – Needs are physical requirements essential to our well-being. Conflicts arise when we ignore others’ needs, our own needs or the group’s needs. It is important to not to confuse needs with desires.  These are the things we would like to have but are not essential.

Perceptions – All humans interpret reality differently. They perceive differences in the severity, causes and consequences of problems. Misperceptions or differing perceptions may come from: self-perceptions, others’ perceptions, differing perceptions of situations and perceptions of threat.  How something is framed will affect its perception.  So in conflict resolution, re-framing is an important task to get to a solution.

Power – How people define and use power is an important influence on the number and types of conflicts that occur. This also influences how conflict is managed. Conflicts can arise when people try to make others change their actions or to gain an unfair advantage.  This is a powerful human motivation.  Everyone wants to establish or reestablish the perception of control.

Values – Values are beliefs or principles we consider to be very important. Serious conflicts arise when people hold incompatible values or when values are not clear. Conflicts also arise when one party refuses to accept the fact that the other party holds something as a value rather than a preference.  To resolve the conflict, clarify each party’s values. 

Feelings and emotions – Many people let their feelings and emotions become a major influence over how they deal with conflict. Conflicts can also occur because people ignore their own or others’ feelings and emotions. Other conflicts occur when feelings and emotions differ over a particular issue.

For an experienced Mediator to help negotiate a resolution to your dispute contact Ken Strongman. Here.

**For the last decade I’ve been involved with leadership development of tomorrow’s leaders.  Using my expertise, I am training the youth leaders in conflict resolution.  This blog is adapted from my training materials. 


Ken StrongmanAbout the Author: Ken Strongman ( has years of experience and a growing national reputation as a mediator and arbitrator.  He has successfully resolved more than a thousand disputes in the fields of construction defects, real estate, intellectual property, and employment.  He is also a Mediator and Arbitrator for FINRA.

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