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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1       BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The evaluation of conflict management on both the private and public sector cannot be an overstatement as it has become a useful tool in promoting organizational development and productivity in any given place. Certainly for organizational developmentto take place there must be adequate conflict management as such, conflict management has become indispensable in any organization or managerial setting in order to progress.

Conflicts are unavoidably a  parts of organizational life since the goals of different stakeholders such as the employee and employers are often incompatible. Gordon (1997) sees conflicts as the result of dissociable potential relationships, this occurs as a result of one party perceiving that another party has impeded, or will frustrate one or more of its concerns. Johnson (2000) views conflict as a struggle or contest between people with opposing needs, ideas beliefs, values or goals while Steers (1998) refers to conflicts as a process in which individuals or groups feels that other individuals or groups have frustrated or are about to frustrate their plans, goals, beliefs, vision or activities.

Conflicthas become a part of organizational life and may occur between individuals, between the individual and the group or between a group.

Mayo (1949) stated that production and productivity depends on the relationship of workers where he divided workers into groups, whichare the management and the employees. He emphasized that there must be a cordial relationship between these groups of workers before any organizational harmony could take place or exist. He further stated that management should always give priority to the need of other employees so that they will have a sense of belonging and as such, increase productivity, but that whenever, the management ignores the need of employees, there would be no harmony and as such productivity will decrease. In a nutshell, this academia is the need on the importance of conflict resolution or management as the cornerstone and central dynamics of organization harmony.

This study is on the declining of conflict within both the private and public sector. It focuses on the causes and types of industrial conflicts as well as the important roles trade unions and other key sectors in conflict resolution play to curb conflict and bring it to a declining stage

1.2       STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

There are many problems facing the private and public sector and their effects widely varies, some of these problems includes: lack of proper welfare package for the employees, problems of poor condition of work, high rate of labour turnover as well as nonchalant attitude of management to workers, low workers productivity among many others.

As a result of these problems enumerated above, conflicts may arise between management and employees. With this statement of problems in view, the research is focused on thorough evaluation of the declining level of conflict on workers in both public and private sectors

1.3       OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

Conflict is a broad topic and it’s an imperative factor in organization harmony and performance. Therefore this research work will attempt to look at the declining level of conflict using public and private workers in Uyo metropolis as a case study with a view to understanding how the decline has come to be.

The following are the objectives of this study:

1.          To identify the causes of conflictwithin private and public sectors in Uyo.

2.          To examine the strategies used in curbing conflict in private and public organizations.

3.          To know how the reduction resolving of conflict can further be attained.

1.4       RESEARCH QUESTIONS

1.  What are the causes of conflict in private and public sector?

2.  What is the relevance of effective conflict management in organizations?

3.  What are the strategies aiming at curbing and controlling conflict?

4.  How can the declining stage of conflict be maintained and reduced further?

1.5       SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

This study is significant for the following reasons:

i)       It is an attempt to bring into light the problems faced by the civil service in Nigeria most especially before and during strike action.

ii)    The findings of this study is also significant to employee associations, trade unions, employers union, labour ministry, organizations and the society at large.

iii) It is an avenue for assessment of all the machineries put in place by the government to help in maintaining industrial peace in the Cross River state civil service.

iv)  Practicing managers will also find this study rich and ideal reference material as it recognizes ways and tools to tackle problem of industrial conflict management in public organizations.

v)    It is imperative to study the role of Cross River state civil service realizing the important part the workers and trade union play in national integration.

vi)  Finally, to those in the academia and conflict researchers, this study will serve as a spring board for further investigation.

1.6       SCOPE OF THE STUDY

A private and public conflict remains a problem that deserves to be minimized. This study will be restricted to the causes, effects or influence, and types of conflicts and especially how conflict has been abated in private and public performance

Therefore, the study will source its data from the target respondents who are workers in both private and public sectors in Uyo, AkwaIbom State and as well use secondary sources of data such as textbooks, journals and internet.

1.7       DEFINITION OF TERMS

CONFLICT:  This means to come into collision or disagreement; to be contradictory, at variance, or in opposition; clash.


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