How do you think your top two "Strategic Processing Styles" and your "Strategic Pattern" affect your communications and decision making at work?
After reviewing the TRIZ formula for Strategic Processing Styles (SPS), I found that the two SPS that best describe me are the Reactive Simulator (RS) and the Relational Innovator (RI) (Ungvari, n.d.). The prevailing attributes of the RS are initiative, accountability, opportunity identification, influencing others through sensitivity, change, decision making, solicit input and information sharing (Ungvari, n.d.). Acknowledging these characteristics of the RS, in can recognize myself in these attributes that define both my communications and decision making at work. As such, I am bold and take initiative for actions that have a high risk potential but also a valuable opportunity potential. I communicate my ideas to my superiors, trying to convince them of the benefit of implementing the recommended actions by appealing to emotions, transmitting them my enthusiasm and the sought results. Because I appeal to people’s emotions for convincing them, my argumentative style is mainly based on pathos (Bouwmeester, 2010), which impacts my communication style, shaping it into an overly ardent vocabulary, accompanied by a rich and self-explanatory body language. Collecting the opinions of others (Ungvari, n.d.) denotes an open and transparent communication. In the same time, in terms of decision-making, collecting information from others demonstrates my need to back-up my ideas with other relevant and consistent opinions. I involve others in my decision-making processes, which indicates my need of gathering more pertinent opinions before acting.
For my organizational communication the attribute of soliciting input and sharing information with others represent tremendous qualities that contribute to an open and contributive organizational environment. For example, when I identify an opportunity I first discuss it with my colleagues informally, gathering their opinions regarding how the organization should act for implementing the idea in order to valorize the opportunity. After this, I propose it to my coordinator and try to convince him of the potential of the identified opportunity and of the benefits that my ideas will generate for the company. I share all my information with the team and I request their feedback for the actions that need to be implemented.
As a Relation Innovator I mostly value the change, innovation, creativity, participative management, networking, mission capacity and multitasking, while also expressing the same characteristics as identified in RS: , information sharing, others’ inputs, opportunities and initiative (Ungvari, n.d.). Having a high ability of networking makes me a great communicator. Moreover, the fact that I practice the participative management influences me to value the opinions of others, which impacts my decision-making style, making it more collaborative and more opened to creative and innovative suggestions. The RI qualities influence my communications by making me more focused and active listener. Active listening implies listening not simply hearing and understanding what the person who talks want to communicate, which, at times, requires decoding the message for avoiding the ambiguity (Blair, n.d.)
Because I can perform multiple tasking at a time, I developed distributive attention, which helps me both to focus on focus on my ideas and to listen to others. For example, when I am writing a creative proposal addressed to my manager, through which in present an innovative solution for improving the efficiency of a working process by integrating a new technology, I integrate the recommendations of specialists from my business networks. Similarly, I require the assistance of my IT colleagues in making my presentation more accurate and follow new trends that might indicate new opportunities for my organization. The fact that I practice the participative management affects my decision making at work because I involve others in my decision makings, which denotes the consultative decision making style (Longest Jr., 2004).
The combination of my two main strategic processing styles makes me a Changer in terms of Strategic Pattern (SP). This SP values rapid action and innovative and creative results, while being exposed to the weakness of lacking attention to detail while implementing the innovative ideas (Ungvari, n.d.).
As such, being overly focused on the innovation and change potential of my ideas, I might reject some logical arguments that recommend necessary routine activities, because I consider them as unnecessarily time consuming, impeding the rapid implementation and obtaining fast results. In such a case, I might lose important information because I did not follow necessary bureaucratic procedures, such as writing down the minutes of the meeting (McNamara, “Basics in Internal Organizational Communications”).
Making decisions based on the rapid implementation of the activities required and guided by the focus on change and innovation, my communications and decision-making style might be impacted by my Changing SP, as I might not listen to more conservative ideas. For example, sometimes during meetings I encourage my team to provide feedback on my ideas. However, I tend to only value the feedbacks focused on innovation, change and immediate action, while giving little attention to the feedbacks that indicate that routine activities and conservative procedures might be required.
My communications might suffer, as my colleagues might consider me as not an open communicator, feeling offended that their ideas were ignored. Similarly, my decision making process might also be negatively impacted, because I failed to acknowledge the value of a conservative recommendation.
Because of the low appreciation of precision and the low level of involving logic and reasoning when arguing, which are traits specific to both RS and RI that compose the Changer SP pattern (Ungvaro, n.d.), my communication style might be seen as inconsistent. Audiences need to be convinced by the messages that they receive from the senders and it takes more than an emphasis of the pathos to convince people. It takes logos and ethos as well and if any of these aspects are missing the communication is incomplete (Long, 2010).
Most of the times, I sustain my arguments appealing to my audiences emotions, striving to transmit my enthusiasm and enrolling my listeners into my vision. Succeeding in influencing people based on emotions (hence based on pathos) is a leadership quality specific to transformational or charismatic leadership style (Day and Antonakis, 2011). However, for being a full leader one requires consistent argumentation that makes use of solid reasoning and credibility (hence logos and ethos).
My communications and decision making style are influenced positively and negatively by my top two Strategic Processing Styles (RS and RI) and by my Strategic Pattern (Changing). The focus on sharing information, listening to others and identifying opportunities generates positive outcomes for my communication style, as it enriches my networking and develops my interpersonal communication. The attributes of my RS and RI also strengthen my decision making style, concentrating it upon the immediate implementation of actions for attaining rapid results. However, the backflip of my Reaction Stimulator and Relation Innovator strategic processing style and Changing strategic pattern is that because I am too focused on rapid implementation and fast results, I avoid the conservative constructive feedback. This avoidance impacts my communication style, because my communication partners consider me inattentive and insensitive to their comments. Similarly, the lack of logos in my argumentation makes me appear as an incomplete communicator. The immediate action feature of my strategic pattern and the focus on changing and innovation hamper my decision making style because I tend to treat superficially significant details.
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Bouwmeester, O. (2010) Economic advice and rhetoric. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing Limited.
Day, V.D. & Antonakis, J. (2012) The nature of leadership. London: Sage Publications, Inc.
Long, J. (2004) Emerging culture leader’s guide. Illinois: Varsity Press.
Longest, Jr. B.B. (2004) Managing health programs and projects. San Francisco: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
McNamara, C. (nd). Basics in internal organizational communications. Retrieved July 27, 2010 from http://www.managementhelp.org/mrktng/org_cmm.htm.
Ungvari, S. F. (nd). (TRIZ)OE = Improving TRIZ Results by Dynamically Matching Tools to Teams. Retrieved July 27, 2010 at: http://www.triz-journal.com/archives/1998/10/a/