Effects of Workplace Conflicts on Performance of Teachers in Public Secondary Schools in Kenya: A Survey of Public Secondary Schools in Nyeri Central District

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Mwangi, Mary Wandia
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Workplace conflict is a specific type of conflict that occurs in workplaces. The conflicts that arise in workplaces may be shaped by the unique aspects of this environment, including the long hours people spend at their workplace, the hierarchical structure of the organization, and the difficulties (e.g. financial consequences) that may be involved in switching to a different workplace. In this respect, workplaces share much in common with schools, especially precollege educational institutions in which students were less autonomous. The study sought to examinethe effects of workplace conflicts on performance of teachers. The main objective of the study was to establish the effects of the workplace conflict on performance of teachers in public secondary schools. The factors under investigation were work relationship conflicts, task conflicts, structural conflicts and the goal conflicts and how they influence the performance of teachers.A review of literature was conducted so as to find out what other researchers had found out on studies related to the topic. The researcher filled the gap by seeking the views of teachers in Nyeri Central District on the effects of workplace conflict on their performance. The study targeted a population of 292 respondents who are principals and teachers in the 17 public secondary schools. Due to the large number of the respondents, the researcher used the proportionatestratified random sampling whereby according to Mugenda and Mugenda (2005), 30% of the target population will be an ideal sample. This translated to 82 teachers who the researcherthen collected data from using questionnaires. The collected data was analyzed using descriptivestatistics and the data was presented in form of frequency tables, charts and graphs. Among the key findings established in the study were that task conflicts had a major influence on the performance of teachers (76%).The structural conflict was also found to have a high influence on teacher performance (75%) Goal conflicts had a relatively low influence on performance of teachers when compared to task and structural conflict(65%) while the work relationship conflict the lowest influence on the performance of teachers(46%).The researcher recommends that all the necessary efforts should be made to manage workplace conflicts by enhancing communication amongst teachers, provision of necessary materials, as well as the provision of a well designed job design and that teachers should come up with SMART individualand organizational goals. The researcher further recommends that more studies should be done on the strategies and mechanisms that need to be adapted to overcome workplace conflictsin public secondary schools.