“No pressure, no diamonds.” ~ Mary Case
Back in the ’70’s, researchers Kenneth Thomas and Ralph Kilmann identified five main styles of dealing with conflict. Their research showed that people typically have a preferred conflict style. But not every style works effectively in every situation.
As a leader ~ and most especially if you are a senior leader ~ you need to know which conflict style you tend toward most, and what the weaknesses of that style can be. And you need to work on developing the conflict styles you feel weaker in. Why? Because your dominant conflict style will likely be mirrored in the culture of the team or organization you lead. If not addressed directly, this dominant conflict style can act like a hidden virus in your cultural system, producing unhealthy team dynamics and undermining your core values.