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About the FIRO-B: Team Mismatches III


A common occurrence in the workplace is learning how to interact effectively with those colleagues whose preferences are different from our own.  As you know, teams can have a preponderance of people with common preferences.  What happens when your preferences clash with the group's?

For example, what if your lowest Wanted Need is Affection but it's the team's highest?  You might be tempted to avoid after-work events, parties, and social functions.  Some people want to skip small talk or pleasant conversation before and after meetings, preferring instead to stick strictly to business.  During meetings, you could keep moving the discussion forward by going on to the next topic.  Others withdraw from the discussion by taking detailed notes.  Still others take unpopular positions in meetings in attempt to focus the group on the topic at hand.

In contrast, Wanted Affection might be your highest need and the group's lowest.  What could happen then?  You might make personal sacrifices for the sake of the team.  You might extend the offer to help people individually, or discuss issues in private, instead of during a meeting.  You could schedule after-work activities in an attempt to bring the team together.  It's possible you would take the lead in providing more honest, direct feedback among the group’s members.  Many people in this situation go to great lengths to help the team, perhaps far more than others involved.

With many mismatches, it depends on how important this need is for you.  If your Expressed Need score is very low (0-2), you might not do any of the above.  Likewise, if Inclusion is your lowest Wanted Need, you might tolerate a mismatch more than with your highest need.


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