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Behavioral Styles

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Behavioral Styles
Society as a whole exhibits multiple behaviors that affect not only the business world but personal lives also. Not all individuals choose to be treated in the same manner. The Platinum Rule focuses primarily on the patterns of behaviors by using scales of directness and openness creating a better means of understanding those around us. The primary behavioral styles consist of the Dominant, Interactive, Steadiness, and Cautious styles. When working within teams throughout the business world, these styles can affect not only teamwork but also the productivity flow of the team. The first behavior style that will be addressed is the dominant behavioral style.
The primary focus of this behavioral style is a no nonsense approach which shows no fear in bending the rules while accepting challenges and problem-solving. The Dominance style member of our group, Terry, is most comfortable when in charge of people or situations due to being goal oriented and exhibiting a desire to achieve. This individual is quick and self motivated and enjoys working alone. She is often a perfectionist and has little tolerance for slower or less adept individuals. This individual's strength lies in her ability to take charge and to make decisions. Weaknesses noted for the dominant style are as follows: impatient, non-flexible, and lack of sensitivity toward others.
The pioneer, which is Terry's primary sub-style has a tendency toward change and prefers to work to her own higher standards. This individual has the ability to remain detached emotionally from others and becomes dictatorial and more aloof as the pressure mounts in any given situation. A pioneer sets very high standards, which can also cause her to feel more negatively about herself. Since Terry is both cautious and dominant she is much more likely to be task and not people oriented.
Some beneficial skills for Terry to learn would be to problem solve with others and enhance people management skills. She must become more adept at tapping into the unique and creative skills of other workers. As a way of becoming more personable it would be a benefit for this individual to show some interest in the people around her. A skill that makes the dominant style individual a good leader is in her ability to think and act quickly when it is required. If the need to control can be held in check it will aid in her management style and will make her appear more reasonable and sensible. The main things that a dominant individual can do to make relationships more harmonious would be to explain oneself, keep emotions in check, include everyone in projects and try not to create conflict amongst team members. Behaving in such a manner will make a dominant behavior style more adaptable when working with other behavioral styles. The next behavioral style that will be discussed is the Interactive behavioral style. This style is the predominant style of behavior for two members of our team.
The Interactive style members of our team are enthusiastic, friendly individuals who enjoy being acknowledged, admired or complimented by peers. Being more relationship oriented than task oriented Cassandra and Paul work well in groups by staying optimistic, persuasive, and charming. They are charismatic and gifted in both communication and people skills. These idea people excel at getting others motivated to accomplish goals.
One sub style of the Interactive style is the Impresser, which not only is less open than the other Interactive styles, but also less direct. Winning with a sense of flair without hurting other's feelings is the primary motivator. This can be both beneficial and a burden to the team. The Impresser will work harder while working in groups and judge members by their ability to create the best way to accomplish a goal. Assigning parts on a project comes easily to Cassandra and Paul.
Shortcuts appear to be cheating and they can get so involved with achievement the truth may become stretched. Behavior such as this is not beneficial for the team working at accomplishing an assigned task. Restlessness, short tempers and lashing out while under pressure complete the overall behavior pattern for Impressers who need to adjust this for a harmonious work environment.
While Impressers are concerned about making a negative impression, they are also hard driven and may blow off steam due to stress caused by such problems as an approaching deadline. The best way for Impressers to overcome this would be through time management courses to deal with pressure, pacing the work schedule to maintain the overall perspective and in acting less emotional or intense over issues that are not as critical to the productivity of the team. A way in which to help our two team members with time management and means of relaxation bring the discussion to the third behavioral style of the Platinum Rule, the Steadiness style.
The Steadiness style individual is supportive, warm, and nurturing. Other attributes of such a person includes; a good listener, devoted friend, and loyal employee. He or she can be an excellent team player; Anil has a relaxed disposition, which makes him more approachable and able to develop strong networks. This supportive person might tolerate environments that are unpleasant rather than risking change due to the distress caused by such disruptions.
One of the sub styles for the Steadiness style is Go-Getter. Anil is the Go-Getter within team A. This sub style represents a desire to tackle more accomplishments by keeping the flow of work steady. Even though this member possesses an indirect nature that might affect the task at hand, he will think through the project by focusing directly on the tasks to be completed. Moreover, this individual excels in short-term planning to reach the goal for project completion along with identifying roles, resources, and time lines. Since self-reliance comes naturally, this member does not depend on others to achieve the quality desired, or for the completion of a task. The steadiness behavior style individual is known for his aversion to risk but also by his composure and stability.
His discomfort when multitasking and performing complicated tasks along with becoming too protective or inhibitive are some of the weaknesses he has experienced in the past. In order to overcome such challenges according to the Disc Platinum Rule, he must understand the end goal of his objective before reacting impetuously to his tasks. When making tough decisions, he needs to check with at least three to five other informed people to see if it is acceptable by others. He should continue to pursue such feedback in the event a consensus is not reached.
As the Steadiness behavior style lends itself to nurturing and supporting others, the Cautious behavioral style tends to be overcritical and more deliberate decision maker. He/she can over-analyze a problem, which could lead to inaction on her part. The cautious individual can work independently, be very persistent, and has good organizational skills. She can sometimes be so focused on the small details that it could lead her to miss the big picture. Since Terry also falls into this behavioral type it seems that this could be a balancing device for her and make it easier to temper the dominant behavioral patterns. This appears to be a type of self-leveling mechanism at work inside this individual to keep the urge to rush forward and take control and temper it with a more analytical approach in which time is given to make the best decision possible. To others this may be perceived as a colder more calculating side of the same individual. Perhaps with her unique sense of humor she could overcome the obstacles by using humor to help temper the rough edges. An example of this would be seeing the humor of the situation when Terry has realized that she is at risk in becoming dictatorial. Another use for humor could be in dealing with the discomfort associated in dealing with the more people oriented behavioral style of the Interactive and Steadiness styles.
In conclusion, the four behavioral styles while different must all have adaptive features to help these different people relate and work with one another. For example the dominant individual, Terry, must strive to recognize the abilities of others in the team and control the urge to take charge; this team member could also temper the overcritical nature by being complimentary to other team members instead of being negative. The Interactive style individuals, Paul and Cassandra, could help smooth the edges for the dominant individual by fostering a team spirit among the members. By being good listeners they could also help by interpreting the messages sent by the dominating and cautious individuals and help keep their focus positive by the people oriented behavior the interactive behavior style members exhibit so well. The Steadiness behavior style listens well to others and this would tend to help keep the channels of communication open amongst various team members. Anil's behavioral style is the most people oriented of the four styles. This individual is a true team player and is very loyal. This type of behavior will enhance the team effort because Anil will promote mutual support and will bring people together in support of him. The cautious behavioral style will tend to adapt well to working with the Steadiness behavioral type because neither individual likes change or risk. The dominant individual may be able to convince these teammates to accept change by explaining the benefits that the change will have. This could alleviate the risk factor for these individuals and make the change more desirable. As a team, we understand that these various behavioral styles could cause conflict, but with mutual respect and an understanding of the different behavioral styles, the potential for a dynamic, creative, and inspiring team exists. The potential for this team seems limitless with all styles working well together to bring out the best in each member.

References:
Alessandra, Tony. The DISC Platinum Rule Behavioral Style Assessment. University of Phoenix. Retrieved on October 8, 2006 from http://www.uop.blanchardassessments.com

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