Conflict management vs. conflict resolution

Navigating conflict: Understanding the difference between conflict management and conflict resolution

Conflict is inevitable in human interaction, especially in professional settings where diverse perspectives and objectives converge. However, how we approach and handle conflict can significantly impact organisational culture, productivity, and employee well-being. In this blog, Rose delves into the crucial distinctions between conflict management and conflict resolution, shedding light on their significance in fostering a harmonious workplace environment.

Key facts and statistics

  • According to a study by CPP Inc., employees in the UK spend approximately 2.1 hours per week dealing with workplace conflict, equating to over £25 billion in lost productivity annually.
  • The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) reports that 85% of UK employees experience conflict at work to some degree, highlighting its pervasive nature.

Key definitions

  • Conflict management - Involves proactively identifying, mitigating, and containing conflicts within an organisation. It focuses on establishing frameworks and processes to address conflicts constructively, aiming to prevent escalation and minimise negative impacts.
  • Conflict resolution - Refers to the process of effectively addressing conflicts to achieve mutually acceptable outcomes. It emphasises communication, negotiation, and problem-solving techniques to resolve underlying issues and restore harmony among involved parties.

Relevant legislation, regulations, and best practice

  • The Equality Act 2010 - Prohibits discrimination, harassment, and victimisation in the workplace, emphasising the importance of fostering an inclusive and respectful environment to prevent conflicts based on protected characteristics.
  • ACAS (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures - Guides handling workplace disputes, highlighting the importance of fair and transparent processes in resolving conflicts.

Best practice

  • Foster open communication channels - Encourage employees to express concerns and grievances openly, facilitating early intervention and resolution.
  • Implement conflict resolution training - Equip staff with the necessary skills and strategies to manage and resolve conflicts effectively, promoting a culture of collaboration and understanding.

Identifying the roots of conflict

Explore common triggers and underlying causes of workplace conflicts, such as miscommunication, divergent goals, or interpersonal differences.

Conflict management strategies

Discuss proactive measures, such as establishing clear communication protocols, promoting diversity and inclusion, and implementing effective leadership and team-building initiatives.

Conflict resolution techniques

Introduce conflict resolution methods, including mediation, negotiation, and compromise, emphasising the importance of empathy, active listening, and problem-solving skills.

Case studies

Share real-life examples illustrating successful conflict management and resolution strategies, demonstrating their practical application and positive outcomes.


  • Encourage proactive conflict management - Invest in training and development initiatives to equip staff and leaders with the skills and knowledge to address conflicts promptly and effectively.
  • Foster a culture of collaboration and respect - Cultivate an organisational climate that values open communication, mutual respect, and empathy, laying the foundation for constructive conflict resolution.
  • Implement conflict resolution mechanisms - Establish formal processes and support systems, such as mediation or peer-to-peer counselling, to facilitate resolution and prevent conflicts from escalating.


In conclusion, conflict management and conflict resolution are indispensable components of effective organisational governance and employee relations. By understanding their distinctions and implementing appropriate strategies and practices, businesses can mitigate the negative impacts of conflicts and foster a culture of collaboration, innovation, and mutual respect. Let us embrace the opportunity to transform conflicts into catalysts for positive change and growth.

Empower your organisation with comprehensive Conflict Management and Conflict Resolution training from The Mandatory Training Group. Click here to explore our tailored solutions. Equip your team with the skills and strategies to navigate conflicts effectively and foster a harmonious workplace environment.

About the author

Rose Mabiza

Rose has dedicated over 15 years to improving health and social care quality through practice, targeted education and training. Her extensive experience includes working with older adults, individuals with mental health conditions, and people with autism and learning disabilities.

Navigating conflict: Understanding the difference between conflict management and conflict resolution - ComplyPlus™ - The Mandatory Training Group UK -

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