A person whose style is high on advocacy and high on empathy will dialogue with those involved in seeking the best outcome for everyone involved.
In the chart, notice the minus sign (low) in the lower left corner. Follow the horizontal line and the vertical line and you will see a plus sign (high). Depending on a person’s style, four outcomes are possible.
A person low on advocacy and low on empathy will avoid a situation or a conflict, and they will take themselves out of the game. They disappear.
A person high on advocacy and low on empathy will dominate a situation. They will do all the talking, all the decision making, ignore input from others, and create a very dysfunctional team.
A person low on advocacy and high on empathy will accommodate everyone. They will go along with the group. They won’t express their opinion. Accommodation is not bad per se, and in some situations it is the best you can get. The fall-out is that those who accommodated often will not support the decision made.
A person who is high on advocacy and high on empathy will dialogue with those involved to achieve the best outcome for everyone.
I have a client in the healthcare field who just took over a company. There had been a leadership gap for years with a revolving door of CEOs. The culture had totally degraded. He had a demoralized staff and a great deal of gossiping and blaming. So instead of being the CEO and outwardly focused, he has been busy turning the culture around as COO. He is internally focused and developing his leaders to move the company forward. As a leader, his aim is to pursue dialogue. To do that he must:
Establish a foundation of unity, mutual respect, and goodwill.
Build a pool of shared understanding from each person’s point of view.
Achieve synergy so that everyone wins.
That should be your style.