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Productive Conflict - Exclusion

The act of exclusion creates conflict, according to the Everything DiSC® Productive Conflict Reference Guide. What it says is:

“During a conflict, it’s not uncommon to exclude someone because we simply don’t want to spend time with them. But even if we don’t want to admit it, exclusion is also a means to emotionally hurt the other person and an attempt to damage their connection to other people in the group. By disrespecting their standing in the group, we gain support for our side of the story. We can shape how people perceive the conflict. Further, we’re more likely to use this strategy if we have greater social status than the other person. Ask yourself: What am I really trying to accomplish by leaving this person out?”

Have you ever been in a situation where you realized that you were purposefully left out? It is extremely hurtful, and confusing! I still can feel the pain from when I realized a high school ‘friend’, J, did this to me. We were teammates on the basketball team and when we returned to school after summer break, Coach asked me why I missed all of the summer scrimmages. I had no idea these practices were being held. I wondered why nobody had told me about them and I gave my teammates every excuse in the book in my mind so that I could come to terms with it. I then found out that coach had asked J to tell me about them, which did not happen for whatever reason, J only knows. Needless to say, I lost my starting post position to J, and lost a friendship. Years later, my heart is still sad about this.

As a DiSC style CS, inclusion is one of my priorities and it also is upsetting to me when others are excluded, even if unintentionally. It is important to keep our eyes on the importance of inclusion and how destructive it can be if neglected.

To view the previous blogs in this series, click the links below:

You can find more information including a video on Everything DiSC® Productive Conflict here:


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