Essay: Intercultural Conflicts in the Workplace
Another example whereby intercultural conflict results is whereby people are ignorant of other cultures, their beliefs and traditions. According to Dan Landis, Janet Bennett and Milton J. Bennett in their classic book: Handbook of intercultural training, the major cause for the cultural conflicts experienced in the workplace today is because of cultural ignorance that is deep-seated in many workers. Supervisors in organizations today are increasingly being taught how to effectively manage such situations, which can be achieved by sideways learning, a very important tool that helps one to learn multiple ways of communicating, listening, seeing, sensing, and experiencing. The lesson also involves teaching one how to effectively interpret a culture based conflict, ,making one effective in mediating conflicts (Landis et al, 2004, pp 233-234).
People have different perceptions of ethics and morality, which has made conflicts to be inevitable in businesses and in the workplace, particularly in organizations where there are no clearly defined ethical principles (Van Slyke, 1999, pp 1-6). Nonetheless, it is widely accepted that ethical behavior entails integrity, honesty, loyalty, caring, pursuit of excellence, respect of others, promise-keeping and accountability. Robert M. Freeman (1999) has defined ethical behavior as “the behavior required by the accepted principles of right conduct or practice governing a particular group or profession” (p. 342).