April 27th, 2009

Our final style of conflict management is “Compromise.”  If you missed last week’s summary for “Obliging” be sure to to take a look at that post.

The final style has an equal balance for “Concern for Self” with “Concern for Others.”  As you can tell by it’s name, it is about compromise.  Keep in mind that BOTH sides must be willing to compromise (which isn’t always the case is it?)

This style is powerful when both sides are right, and very dangerous when one side is wrong (what message would compromise send to the side that is wrong?)  If there is a balance of power it is effective and if both sides are willing to give something up.  This is very popular in politics, negotiations between union and management as well as departmentally.

The danger for most of us is when we think we are compromising but the other party isn’t compromising.  We end up giving in (see last week’s message).

Make sure that if you are willing to compromise that your partner is equally concerned with solving the issue amicably.

Are you actually compromising or are you giving in to someone who isn’t giving back?

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