The history between two groups is a potent deciding factor the possibility of conflicts. It has been observed that countries which have a long history of conflicts and inter-struggle cause conflicts between groups. Besides, families have maintained serious conflicts for generations together as sometimes a conflict between two people may have roots in an event that is many years past. In all such examples history stands as a potent source of conflicts and such conflict must be viewed within its historical context. (Mayer, 2000). Lingenfelter and Mayers (2001) stated that it takes time and effort to overcome the historical issues where the multicultural organizations provide a good platform for interaction between people of various backgrounds to have talks to overcome such issues but in despite such effort the history between the two cultures and countries most of the time acts as a potential source of conflicts. Screening methods
The impact of value system of a particular culture in conflicts is immeasurable. Robbins (2001) pointed out that value systems is one of the most overlooked variables in the study of conflict. Banks (2001) elaborated that the practice of openness to value systems for other cultures helps people to begin the process of questioning personal assumptions resulting questioning monoculture perspective. Simerly (1998) stated that a conflict of values is the potent source to conflicts. Hiebert (1985) accepted that in a situation when multicultural behavioral practices are threatened, the response is more instinctive and provocative. The value system, at an extended level is associated with one’s cognition through which one develops beliefs and faiths about personal or social issues undergoing personal experience (Samovar, et al, 1981). Various decisions related to the development of our own likeness and aversion comes from within the culture. Mayer (2000) has significantly commented that the value system at times works as an evaluative tool to decide and determine right and wrong for people, and such are developed through the process of enculturation and are most of the times operational on a subconscious level. The values govern the actions and reactions of an individual. The values also dictate appropriate and inappropriate behavior in society. The analysis and understanding of personal values and the values of others are significant elements in crosscultures. Hermann et al (1997) stated that understanding values and assumptions usually contributes to avoid the misinterpretation of behavior and intentions in a cross-cultural setting.
Overflowing impulsive emotions are most of the times the root cause of conflicts. Manifestation of anger is in every form of conflict varying in degrees. (Browning, Davis & Resta, 2000; Dana, 2001) made statement that anger is most observable element in every conflict. The forms of anger might be hidden or palpable but remains present causing and flaring conflicts. Some other strong emotions also regularly contribute on the spontaneity and nature of conflict. The impulses of emotional blocks often forces rationality to set aside. Horowitz and Boardman (1994) commented that the influences of perception are concrete and potential where the intentions play as catalytic agent.
The problem of cross-cultural communication in modern multicultural organizations, no doubt, produces confusion among co-workers leading to conflicts; which is further flared up by the personal assumptions. Roerden (2001) comments the today’s workforce need to adept themselves in the art and artifice of new social skills and a continuous update on other culture’s front. Ewert (2000) further added that employees need tools of cultural analysis, along with specific cultural information to adept and skill themselves for the better comprehension of cross-cultural interactions and styles, he pointed out that “Understanding does not inevitably lead to harmony, but it is a necessary pre-condition”. Ewert (2000). Actually conflict of any sort is highly unaffordable for any organization expecting coherency in work. The most essential element to root out conflict as Kramsch (2002) suggests is “bridges of tolerance” while the most potential obstacles to raise such bridge is prejudice and discrimination (Mor Barak, 2000). However, the potent reason to aggravate and provoke conflict in multicultural organizational set gets closely attached with the elements like communication, perception, ethnocentric behavior and enculturation, impulsive emotions, the history of relations and the one’s value system. This suggests a separate research on these issues to melt down and evaporate cultural conflicts in multicultural organizations.