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Author: Sophia Tutorial

Identify representations of the pre-conflict stage of conflict.

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Are there patterns or natural stages to conflict? Yes, there are. And, in fact, everyone who studies conflict will talk about the stages that conflict will go through when there may be slight differences in the way it's discussed.

But all people do agree that there are basically-- broadly speaking-- three phases. And these phases are the pre-conflict stage, the conflict stage, and the post-conflict stage. You noticed I've circled pre-conflict, and that's because I'd like to discuss that stage of conflict with you today.

I'm Marlene. I want to welcome you to this tutorial. And let's start out by defining pre-conflict.

So pre-conflict stage-- what is that? That is the stage of conflict in which parties' needs are not being met, but they're unaware of the relationship between them. So, for example, you're at work, and you enjoy your work. You enjoy your job. You know there's going to be some changes. They've hired a new divisional VP. In fact, that's led to a couple of management changes right in your division, in your office. But you've met the new managers, and things seem fine.

That's the pre-conflict stage or could be the pre-conflict stage. Things could be brewing, and you're not aware of them.

Or the neighborhood. You've had neighbors living next door for years that you've enjoyed. They've moved. And now there's a new family that's moved in. And you notice it's a rather large family, and they seem to have a lot of relatives coming over.

But they're really nice people, and they've got kids your age. And you like them. You think everything is fine, and your kids seem to enjoy their kids. So you're a little surprised by all the people that seem to be coming over to their house, but things seem fine at this point.

Or your spouse has come home, and said he's got extra assignments at work that are going to require travel. And so you know that he's traveling quite a bit, and you're feeling tired a lot. But you really haven't made the connection, yet, between his increased duties and the fact that you seem to be more tired than usual.

So these are three examples of what we call the pre-conflict stage. Once again, conflict can be divided into stages, patterns. And three basic patterns that everyone agrees on would be the pre-conflict, the conflict, and the post-conflict.

Thank you for being part of this tutorial. And I look forward to seeing you next time.

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Terms to Know
pre-conflict stage

The stage of conflict in which parties' needs are not being met but are unaware of the relationship between them.