February '16

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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98 || P R I N T W E A R F E B R U A R Y 2 0 1 6 to be recognized and thanked, especially by an authority figure or someone they ad- mire. The hero will be proactive, assertive, or aggressive, but one wearing a martyr's mask will tend to cajole, patronize, or take the side of the hero in some form. The best thing a martyr can do in this situation is to not sign onto the hero's team. When the villain gets near the victim, they are both going after the same thing; they want attention, but the villain is far and above the superior contestant in this quest. Invariably, the villain will win out until finally the victim erupts. Then the villain will be prone to a statement such as, "What… can't you take a joke?" or, "I was only kidding." This is a clas- sic case of bullying, and in the workplace, the manager must take action to prevent all occur- rences of bullying, even when the bad actor is part of the man- agement team. Intervention may be the only way to correct bullying. As you might expect, these various personalities are assertive action types, but they are dia- metrically opposed, so they will tend to initiate and perpetuate a lot of conflict and drama. The best way to short-circuit these contentious confrontations is to avoid the trap at all costs. This may require counseling from the boss or external, qualified sources. For example, if a hero would deem the villain worthy of a chat, they come prepared to take attention. The villain should try to resist the temptation to play the game to extinguish the fire. Conversely, if the villain comes calling on the hero, the latter should try, if it is only for a moment, to get through the exchange without insisting on praise. Only under intense interrogation will a hero ultimately acquiesce and admit his actions have been 1) required and 2) justifiable, but only for the greater good. Similarly, a villain put under extreme du- ress, stipulating his conduct was required and justifiable, will then confess that his conduct has been based upon self-defense from a fate forced upon him by the general population. THE OTHERS From a superficial level, heroes protecting victims may not only look innocent, but beneficent. If the victim is being put upon and a hero steps in, surely the victim is grateful, but that's not their role in the com- pany. Although short term this may have a positive outcome, allowing a hero to be a hero is like throwing gas on a flame—it'll burn you in the end. Martyrs are their kindred spirit. These two may not be capable of changing their lot, but to allow them a pity party will have a negative and draining effect on both of them specifically, and the company in gen- eral. Villains and martyrs will have the same conflicts as villains and heroes, but no one will ever know. To remedy the situation, lis- ten closely to the mutterings of the martyr and take the appropriate action. PARALYSIS VIA ANALYSIS In the big scheme of things, apparel deco- rating pales in comparison to the complex- ity of the interactions of our species, so don't underestimate the depth and scope of the drama. The seemingly innocuous terms parry, lob, forewarned/forearmed, volley, countermand, retaliate, and pushback are all subtle clues that there is conflict abrew. But who can assist in our quest to minimize internal conflicts? The prime directive of the generic HR department is all too often to maintain the status quo and "harmony," which is thinly-veiled conflict. The typical manager is not likely afforded the time and were it to be so, they may not be qualified to intervene or to explain when one party is emo- tional. The best solution is not to play referee, but to recognize the dysfunctional pairings. Armed with what I suspect is this new perspective for some of you, you may have a newfound ability to counsel each of your direct re- ports to do everything possible to act like a self-aware adult. The problem only occurs when two play the game, so it's important to understand how to best deflect drama between varying personalities. The key is that most people move toward pleasure, but everyone moves away from pain. Although neither of the two parties at battle may real- ize they are participating, you may begin to notice the consequences in turnover, quality throughput, and profitability. MOTIVATIONAL PROFILING

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