You are managing a PLC design project. If you deliver on time, your company will make a large profit. Any delay will significantly impact the project’s margins. Suddenly, two senior team members approach you with a conflict. You know that according to the PMBOK Guide project team members are initially responsible for the resolution of their conflicts. In fact, this was incorporated as one of your agreed team ground rules.
How will you react to this situation?
A.) You will tell them to resolve the conflict themselves
B.) You will accept the idea of the senior most team member
C.) You will try to help resolve the conflict
D.) You will approach your sponsor for help
Question provided by The PM Exam Simulator: www.pm-exam-simulator.com
Answer & Explanation
Correct Answer: C)
The scenario describes the two people approaching you as “”senior team members””. We can therefore safely assume that they are senior enough to try to resolve the conflict themselves before approaching you. Therefore, they are now turning to you for help.
By saying “”Suddenly, two senior team members approach you…”” we tried to trick you into believing that they hadn’t already tried working it out themselves. But of course, when someone approaches you, it is always “”suddenly”” from your perspective, even though the other side may have gone through a long preamble before “”suddenly”” reaching out to you.
Also, while the PMBOK Guide mentions that team members are initially responsible for the resolution of their conflicts, it does not say that if they approach you for help that you send them back. It’s your responsibility as the project manager to help resolve team issues if they are unable to resolve them on their own.
Reference: PMBOK Guide 5th Edition, page 283
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