Navigating Change & Conflict

Understanding the People Factor in Conflict

by Tony DiLeonardi

When it comes to human interaction, we are all very aware of the many natural differences among us.  We've often interacted with people and had natural connections or natural conflicts from the start.  These are called normal differences according William Marston, who in the 1920s developed a system for describing normal differences among people.
According to Marston's work, most of us are a combination of several styles. Despite human nature to think otherwise, it's important to remember that there is no right or wrong style.  It is also important to understand that there are strengths and challenges for each.
To identify which style you fall into, ask yourself the following questions: 
First, when faced with a decision are you more impulsive or are you slow and methodical?
Secondly, when given a task, are you more
focused on the task at hand or are you more focused on relationship and people?
From your responses, you will fall into one of four styles listed below.  I encourage you to understand where your clients fall within the four styles, and understand the strengths and weaknesses of each style. 
Powerhouses: If you are more impulsive and more task-oriented, you are a Powerhouse.  Powerhouses are results-oriented and all about the bottom line. 
Perfectionists: If are more methodical and more task-oriented you are a Perfectionist.  Perfectionists are slower, accurate, more analytical people. 
People People: If you are more methodical and more people-focused, you are the People People style.  The People People are very supportive, tactful and amiable. 
Persuaders: Finally, if you are people-focused and more impulsive, then you are a Persuader.  The Persuaders are high energy, optimistic and articulate people. 
In my next post, we'll explore each personality style and how to best approach each style in a conflict situation.