HCOM 214: Interpersonal COMM & Conflict

Learning interpersonal communication skills to improve every part of our lives

managing conflict and power #6

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After completing the self-quiz on Power-Distance, I was scored as a Low Power-Distance person. In hindsight, I could have figured this out from analyzing my experiences with conflict throughout my life. But on the quiz it was very decided since I didn’t agree with hardly any of the statements they laid out.

My score suggests that I don’t view power as consequential unlike high power-distant people. This is true in my life. It’s not like I don’t respect people with power or that it means nothing to me, rather, I believe that people in authority can and should be questioned and challenged. For me, people with power must be questioned exactly because they have power. There must be a check on their authority. So, for the specific question on the quiz that went something like, “you believe that respect for authority is the most important thing you could teach your children,” I disagreed; I would rather teach them respect than the unconditional respect for authority.

My score also suggests that I engage in conflicts with powerful people, and that I easily confront them. This is also true in my life, though it does depend on the person in power. In my history of conflicts, more than a few have been with parents, teachers, and coaches. This shows that I don’t avoid conflicts with those in power. However, when it comes to interpersonal power rather than authority figures, I find that much trickier to navigate. If a friend were to wield their social network currency or intimacy currency in an unfair way, I might not bring it up because it’s scary to be powerless in those situations.

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