What's Your Conflict-Resolution Style?

As per the Thomas-Kilman Conflict Mode Instrument (www.cpp.com), which we had to take for the Jack Welch EMBA Leadership class, there are 5 conflict-resolution styles.

As you can see from the chart above, these five are plotted on two axes: assertiveness and cooperation. 

So for those who prefer to—
  • avoid conflict, they are both unassertive and uncooperative;
  • accommodate, they are highly cooperative but unassertive;
  • collaborate, they are both cooperative and assertive;
  • compete, they are highly assertive but uncooperative;
  • compromise, they are somewhat assertive and cooperative.
My default method seems to be to compromise, with collaboration in second place and avoidance in last and with a very low score. 

But as the assessment report points out, every type has its use and instances where it's actually the preferred method. For example, avoidance is good when there's a more important issue that needs to be resolved first or when emotions need to cool down before a conversation can be productive. Compromise is good when you're under deadline but collaboration is better for long-term solutions. Even competition and accommodation have their places: competition for emergency situations and accommodation when keeping good-will is most important. There are more examples for each and it made interesting reading.

It's also been interesting taking all these assessments for class, and both discussing and considering how the results influence my leadership style. In both cases the profile reports have gone to great lengths to explain that there is no right or wrong style, nor a preferred one, but that knowing oneself better will allow us to be more strategic in how we interact—and resolve conflicts—with others.

What was the last personality assessment you took and was it helpful? And what's your preferred conflict-resolution style?

No comments:

Post a Comment