No two people have the same idea, and it can lead to conflict. Conflict in itself is not bad; conflict is necessary for growth. But when not checked, it can be detrimental to the growth we seek. The office is no exception, there are various types of workplace conflict, and they all are important. Through proper conflict resolution in the office, companies can help improve employee relationships. 

Here are five types of workplace conflict 

Task-based conflict 

This type of conflict arises when one person’s task determines the success of another person’s task. It can be a cause of the dependent nature of work. For example, web developers cannot develop without a design. When one aspect of a project is lagging, the entire team is on hold. As a result of this, one might get upset and lash out in annoyance. 

Solution: Delegate tasks effectively. Ensure everyone knows how important their part is and the need to stick to time. If there will be a delay from anyone, the person should communicate effectively with the team. 

Leadership Conflict 

Various people have various ways of doing things, and leading is not excluded from that list. Individuals possess different leadership styles; some are assertive, while others are more laid back. Because of this, some employees might find them harsh or pushy, and that can lead to conflict. For example, Dele from accounting would keep complaining about how his boss isn’t flexible with deadlines. While Daniel is grateful for the rigid structure because he knows he can be lazy at times. 

Solution: Leaders should be aware of their leadership style and learn to connect with their subordinates differently. You cannot use a one size fit all approach when dealing with people. Learn to always connect to employees individually. 


Personality Conflict 

We are not all the same, and people are not who we want them to be; they are who they are. Because of these differences, we would likely not like the personality of some people. It could be how they talk, how they eat, or the way they interact you find annoying.  If you do not check your distaste for them, you will find yourself disdaining them. And when this happens, any little disagreement can lead to a significant fight. 

Solution: Check yourself to see you are not continually judging people based on the little things you know about them. Often our conviction about a person is wrong. Get to know them, and if it’s a trait they can work on, help them. By doing this, you can avoid a blown-out conflict at work. 

Idea Conflict 

This happens when two employees have similar, varying ideas on how to carry out a project. Neither of them wants to let go of their vision because they both think theirs is the best. As a result of their adamant behavior, they end up quarreling with one another. 

Solution: Know that disagreements are normal, but what is not normal is letting it lead to a workplace conflict. Both parties should step out and discuss with each other. They can rob off their ideas and see how they can synchronize them into becoming a better one. Better still, they can walk up to a senior colleague who would help brush up their ideas and merge them.


The human resource manager would have to step in when dealing with discrimination. If there is any form of harassment based on age, gender, ethnicity, or race, it needs to be stopped. If not checked, certain people in the organization would feel like they don’t belong, leading to unproductivity.

Solutions: The company has to emphasize its policy against discrimination and allow people to be who they are. 

You can reduce workplace conflict with regular coaching sessions and iterating the company policies in meetings. Make your employees know it is okay to be different and your organization is accepting of their differences. 

Also, read 5 Nigerians talk about office politics