Working in Collaborative Practice: Conflict Management Styles in Dental Professionals

Laila Shakeel Abbasi1                  BDS, MHPE
Taliya Sajjad2                                BDS, MHPE
Khaulah Jawed3                           BDS, ICMT, MHPE
Aqsa Akhtar4                                BDS


OBJECTIVE: Conflicts are inevitable in all human interactions. Clinicans at workplaces experience both personal and
professional conflicts. Dental clinicians engage in multidisciplinary teamwork during their practice, which exposes them to a
variety of conflicting situations. The study aimed to explore the trend of different conflict management styles practiced by
dentists while working in collaborative practices.
METHODOLOGY: The study was cross sectional descriptive survey in which 146 dental clinicians from multiple institutions
participated with voluntary and informed consent. Rahim Organizational Conflict Inventory-II (ROCI-II) tool was used to
collect data against the use of conflict management styles namely, Collaborating, Accommodating, Competing, Avoiding and
Compromising. The obtained data were analyzed through SPSS 25.0. The data were categorized according to the 5 styles of
conflict management and association with the variables of gender, position in organization, and type of organization was seen
for each conflict management style.
RESULTS: The study revealed that 54.8% of participants had collaborating style followed by avoiding style (18.5%) whereas,
competing style was least predominant (3.4%). Both genders had collaborating style as most predominant style. No strong
difference was seen in the frequency of conflict management styles between the dentists belonging to private and public
Every cadre of clinicians was more inclined towards "collaborating" and "avoiding" conflict management style. Besides these
two styles, house officers and demonstrators were more "accommodating" while residents and assistant professors were more
CONCLUSION: Dental clinicians in the present study mostly used collaborative style for conflict management in their practices.
The awareness of conflict management styles is important so that the use of positive conflict management styles could be
maximized. The use of effective conflict management styles should be taught to young dentists in order to equip them with
necessary tools for everyday collaborations at clinical workplaces.
KEYWORDS: Conflict, Conflict management, dentists, workplace
HOW TO CITE: Abbasi LS, Sajjad T, Jawed K, Akhtar A. Working in collaborative practice: Conflict management styles in
dental professionals. J Pak Dent Assoc 2022;31(3):131-135.
Received: 30 December 2021, Accepted: 23 May 2022

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