Conflicts - A perspective
"Where all think alike, no one thinks very much."
- Walter Lippmann
While conflicts may have several pros and cons, they cannot be completely avoided. Decision making, strategy formulation, process execution and reviews always have a conflict element in them. While organizations look forward to disruptive innovation and up-gradation, maybe the 'conflict management' aspect is something that needs a re-look.
People across disciplines have their take on conflict management. Ex: http://donnacardillo.com/articles/sevenstrategies/ details strategies suggested by Donna Cardillo, an inspiration Guru. While the behaviour of people cannot be controlled by the organization, the organization can surely think of testing people on their conflict management skills in the recruitment and selection process.
Probably a matrix marking structure can be used, where vertical heads are involved in deciding the ideal responses versus the actual responses and a score can be given to the individual based on this performance. The next step could be analyzing the responses and soliciting justification for the same.
This may involve a great degree of time and resource allocation and hence this process can be restricted to positions that involve substantial key decision making and leadership. However, the observer bias still remains and calls for some amount of innovation and creative thinking.
Finally, the fact that some conflicts are good, still holds ground especially with a young workforce who have diverse tastes and viewpoints.