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Cohort Meeting Recap: Conflict Resolution and the Recipe for Success

Our meeting this week featured two incredible speakers: Tali Hadasah Blan and Dr. Muli Peleg.

Tali is a lecturer at the University of Haifa and the Founding Director of Hadasah Academic College’s Innovation Center. He spoke about the founding team composition and the role of money in startups. Investors are attracted to a team with members in possession of concrete skills and experience, particularly entrepreneurial, managerial and industry-related experience. Having experienced people in the team is always an advantage, especially with respect to resource administration and allocation. While it is evident that all startups are in need of financial resources and funding, it remains important to ask yourselves what you and your teammates can offer in exchange for the money provided by investors.

Dr. Muli Peleg is a research fellow at Stanford University and he specializes in conflict resolution — though in recent years, he has shifted his focus towards conflict management. He draws on his diverse experience as a facilitator of interfaith and intercultural dialogue and more recently, as Director at Oranim International. He begins his lecture by proposing to discuss and analyze conflict as a social phenomenon, taking on an inductive lens by encouraging everyone to identify and apply the lessons from their own individual lives. Peleg says that “conflict is a unitary phenomenon”: whether it be conflict in the household, workplace or between countries and cultures, they are more or less the same phenomenon. He stresses that conflict is about perception, awareness and choice. It is a voluntary choice for one to engage in a conflict:

“Don’t take conflicts for granted, they are a human phenomenon. If we understand them better, we’ll be able to manage them better.”

Peleg goes onto introducing the structure of conflict, highlighting the “conflict triangle” composed of three components: the 1) situation—being the circumstances and the environment; 2) attitude—the psychological position of the actors in involved; and 3) behavior—the way in which relevant players act in the given situation. Three models were presented to demonstrate conflict dynamics: the helix of conflict model, the escalation model and the spatial-contagion model.

This session's deep-dive into the role of a startup team and the many facets of conflict resolution engaged the program's cohort with more valuable insight as they begin to wrap-up their second phase of their startup creation journey in the program.

Written by: Adi Nassar & Salina Kuo


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