Reaction to Conflict

Read the situation below and then write how you would react to the situation if you were using each of the
common reactions to conflict.
Joe Hunter has been with the San Angeles Police Department for the past 6 years. After graduating second in
his class at the state police academy, Hunter was hired as a patrol person with San Angeles. He quickly moved
up in the ranks to corporal in his second year and sergeant in his fourth. All of the officers consider Hunter to
be the best cop on the force because of his high level of intelligence as well as his uncanny ability to work with
the public by anticipating problems in the community.
Everything was going along well for Sergeant Hunter until the spring of 1988. During this time, he started
dating a girl that he quickly fell in love with. What he didn’t know until 5 months after they began dating was
that she had once been engaged to his captain.
When Hunter’s captain discovered the relationship, he was furious with Hunter, but knew that legally he could
not control the private life of his employee. However, even though he could not directly tell Hunter what to do,
he decided to make his life miserable at work. Captain Webb constantly gave Hunter the worst assignments,
kept him away from the public contact that made him such a good officer, and started to lower Hunter’s
performance evaluations.
Hunter was frustrated, then hurt, and finally angry. He finally reached a point where one day he was so angry,
that he had to do something. If Hunter were to apply each of the common reactions to conflict in this situation,
what would he do in each case? Which one would be the most appropriate?
Please address each of these reactions to conflict in your discussion of the above situation. Don’t forget to
discuss which of these reactions you think would be most effective in this situation and why.
Win at all costs
Third party intervention

Sample Solution