There are three different areas in which we completed surveys; relationships with employees, relationships with colleagues, and relationships with supervisors. I was not surprised at where I ended up on the three sections. My relationships with employees and colleagues fell into Type D, while my relationship with my supervisor fell into Type B.
I believe that I have a great working relationship with my employees and my colleagues. I am extremely open for suggestions and thoughts from colleagues and employees. This is what I interpreted as the «Ideal Window». This reflects a high degree of trust in the group or in any important relationship. I feel like I have an excellent working relationship with my employees and colleagues because I not only give factual information, but also feelings, wants, needs, desires, and allow myself to be open to criticisms and where I am coming from a personal level. The size of my arena is not too large where I loose control over what I want them to know about my, but I am open enough when there is minimal defensiveness. I facilitate a group setting where giving and receiving feedback is welcome. I believe that due to my openness, other group members do not need to interpret more personal meanings into my behavior.
As in any organization communication plays a very important role in their success. Leaders must create an environment that creates trust and the sharing of information. Productivity and interpersonal effectiveness are directly related to the amount of equally held information. The larger the arena becomes, the more rewarding, effective, and productive the relationship will be. I think the trick to keeping a Type D management style, is to not open your arena too much where you leave nothing personal. There are personal aspects to your life that you should not share with people because it can interfere with daily work activities and could create a perception of you that you may not want.
While my relationships with my employees and colleagues fell into a Type D, my relationship with my supervisor fell into a Type B. Type B is someone who has a large hidden area. I keep a lot of information to myself and don’t let my supervisor know too much about my personal life outside of work. Although, the last few years I have opened up and gave him some insight into my personal life, but not a lot. I seem to only share information when asked and don’t express my opinion vocally until asked. My fear is that I may be risking too much, with exposure to doubt. I want to protect myself from being criticized. On the other hand, I may keep certain kinds of information secret to support and protect others. I want to know where other people stand before I commit myself.
I don’t necessarily want to change my relationship with my supervisor. We have a great working relationship and I don’t want to open up anymore than I have from a person vantage point. I would however, like to express my opinion without reserve in a group setting. I feel that my working relationships with my employees and colleagues are solid. In fact, when we were given this assignment I copied the «relationships with supervisors page» and erased my answers and gave them to my employees to fill out. I explained to them that this was a survey for them and myself to help me become a better supervisor and that this would not reflect negatively on them. I received the surveys back and most of them were where I thought they would be; in the Type D range. There was one employee that was more in the Type A range than I would have thought.
Every other week I have group meetings with my staff and we discuss weekly activities and upcoming events. This time after our bi-weekly meeting, I thanked them for their response and asked them if I could meet with them all individually to discuss the results. I have not yet spoken with the Type A range person yet, but I hope to next week, so that I can assess what things I can be doing differently to reach this person.