Productive Conflict: Finding the Root of the Problem

This week, we’re starting a new series on productive conflict behaviors. In a previous series, we looked at unproductive behaviors. You can find the first post in that series here.

Going back to DiSC, some of these behaviors will come more naturally to you than others, depending on your style. For example, if you have a C style, you may find that separating emotion from fact comes more naturally to you than offering reassurance. If you have an i style, you may find that acknowledging the feelings of others comes more naturally than giving others time and space. Remember that just because some behaviors come more naturally doesn’t mean you can’t accomplish those that don’t.

Let’s begin with—

Finding the Root of the Problem.

Have you ever heard or been involved in a conflict that chases so many rabbit trails that no one remembers what started the conflict in the first place?

Sure. We all have.

Every conflict has a root problem and symptoms of that problem. Too often, we spend more time on the symptoms than going to the root. Focusing on the symptoms is unproductive, but asking questions and digging deeper to find the root is productive.

When we center our conflict around the root issue, we are more likely to stay on track and move toward a solution, better buy in, more trust, and stronger relationships.

C styles and D styles may find this productive behavior comes more naturally to them than S styles and i styles.

This is the 1st post in an 18-part series discussing positive conflict behaviors. Effective leaders encourage productive conflict and discourage unproductive conflict. Follow along as we explore the positive impact of these behaviors.

2 Responses

  1. Jordan Kuhns
    | Reply

    This really made me think of the “5 Why’s” process. We use it to drive down to the root cause on our team (whether it’s a personnel/leadership issue or a technical/system issue). It’s helped us do exactly what you’re talking about.

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