Presentation on theme: "Introduction to assertiveness"— Presentation transcript:
1 Introduction to assertiveness Professional DevelopmentIntroduction to assertivenessPrepared by Suzanne Morton1
2 Today’s session - content Professional DevelopmentToday’s session - contentDifficult situations – our choicesIdentifying assertive, aggressive and submissive behaviourTypes of assertion for different scenariosAction planning2
3 Why do we need assertion? Poor / inappropriate communicationPressure of workPersonality clashConflicting interestsConflicting valuesUnrealistic expectationsMisunderstandings / mistakesNO!
4 What problems can unresolved conflict cause? Anger / argumentsPoor productivityPoor relationshipsResentmentGuiltStressIllness / insomniaetc…………….
5 ...which was fine when we lived in caves! The natural response to conflict or ‘danger’ is to react (flight or fight).......which was fine when we lived in caves!
6 Instead of this we should choose the ‘best’ response or attitude Our choices:Give yourself time / space to thinkReframe the situation – i.e. try to see it differentlyTry different behaviour (assertion?)
7 The choice you make is critical to the outcome Professional DevelopmentThe choice you make is critical to the outcomeThe attitudes that we adopt in any situation partly determine how the situation will unfold.Zohar & Marshall (1993)7
8 Spectrum of behaviours Professional DevelopmentSpectrum of behaviours8
9 Group ExerciseFor the behaviour type your group has been asked to look at:Write a definitionDiscuss examples of words and body language associated with this behaviour type
10 Aggressive behaviourStanding up for your rights in a way violates the rights of othersIgnoring or dismissing the needs, wants, opinions, feelings or beliefs of othersExpressing your own needs, wants and opinions in inappropriate ways
11 Aggressive words Shut up Stupid Don’t you ever listen What a nerve Because I said soGet on with itYou’d betterCome onI told you so
12 Submissive behaviourFailing to stand up for your rights or doing so in a way that others can easily disregard themExpressing your needs, wants, opinions, feelings or beliefs in apologetic or self effacing waysFailing to express honestly your own needs, wants beliefs and opinions
13 Submissive words Sorry It’s only me Would you mind I could come back laterWell it’s a bit awkward, but er…..I wonderExcuse meI guessSorry to bother you
14 Assertive behaviourStanding up for your own rights in such a way that you do not violate another person’s rightsExpressing your needs, wants, opinions, feelings or beliefs in direct honest and appropriate ways
15 Assertive words I would like I think Let’s consider the options I’d like to hear your viewWhat do you think about....?I can see thatHow can we resolve this?
16 AlsoBeing clear about what you feel, what you need and how it can be achievedBeing able to communicate calmly without attackingSaying “yes” when you want to, and saying “no” when you mean “no”Deciding on, and sticking to, clear boundariesBeing happy to defend your positionBeing confident about handling conflict if it occursUnderstanding how to negotiate if people want different outcomesBeing able to listen to othersBeing able to give and receive positive and negative feedback
18 Handling difficult situations (1) Putting your point of view or suggestion across Use basic assertionYou make a straightforward statement which makes clear your needs, wants, beliefs opinions or feelings or stands up for your rights by. e.g. “I need to leave by 12 noon today.”Keep it simple!
19 (2) Getting someone to open up Use responsive assertionYou are aiming to find out where the other person stands, or what their needs, wants opinions and feelings aree.g. “What would you prefer to do this evening?” or “What problems does the new system create for you?”
20 (3) Softening the blow / increasing the chances of being heard Use empathetic assertionA statement that contains some empathy followed by a statement of your needs / wants.e.g.”I can see you’re busy at the moment John but I’d just like to ask a quick question”
21 (4) Taking the heat out / slowing things down Use foggingA way of slowing the other person down without agreeing or disagreeing with them.e.g. “That’s a useful interpretation” or“That is certainly one way of looking at it”
22 (5) Making sure you are heard / dealing with being ‘cornered’ Use the instant replay techniqueA way of getting your message through without nagging or whining. The message is repeated or paraphrased until it can no longer be dismissed or ignored.e.g. “I can’t get the amendments done by 2 o’clock”………….“I can’t do the amendments by 2 o’clock but I could do it by 4 o’clock”……“As I’ve already said I can’t do the amendments by 2 o’clock”…..
23 (6) Dealing with people who don’t do what they promise Use discrepancy assertionA statement that shows the other person has ‘moved the goalposts’.e.g. “Mike, when we spoke last month, you said you would let me have your feedback more quickly, I’m still keen for that to happen”
24 (7) Dealing with insensitive people Use negative feelings assertion (‘I’ statements)A statement which shows another person the undesirable effect their behaviour is having on you.e.g. “I feel that I’m not being taken seriously / being heard”“I feel very concerned about the impact this change will have on quality of the end resultIt is really important to avoid generalisations and ‘YOU’ statementse.g. “You never take me seriously”“You’re taking no account of the impact this will have on the quality of the end result”
25 (8) Finally as a last resort ......! Use consequence assertionA statement that informs the other person of the consequences if the situation is not resolved.e.g. “If I can’t get the equipment I need, I’ll have no option but to delay the project by 2 weeks / escalate this to the Head of School. I’d rather we didn’t get to that stage.”
26 Weigh it up! What will I gain by being assertive? What will I lose by being assertive?
27 Different Perspectives (1) ReframingDifferent Perspectives (1)2 people can look at the same situation or ‘picture’ and see entirely different things
29 Changing our attitude If my underlying assumption is: I am right, you are wrongI am well-intentionedYou are misinformedYou are acting on a selfish basisI need to persuade you to do what I know is right…..then conflict is likely to result
30 However - if I ‘re-frame’ the situation……... What I see is just one perspectiveI may be missing somethingYou may see something I’ve missedYou have good intentions (we can pretend you do even if it’s hard to spot!)Then conflict is less likely to arise or likely to be resolved more quickly
31 Other re-framing strategies If someone is being really difficultTry to see the situation through their eyes..... (e.g. Are they under pressure from someone else?)Imagine something unimaginably awful has happened to the person recently (it may not be true but it can help!)
32 For people who you find slightly scary! Imagine them doing something very ‘normal’ like shoppingImagine them as an irritating fly or a child that wants an ice-cream – they can’t really hurt you
33 Your action plan Choose a situation you want to be more assertive in Be clear what your goal isWhat would you normally do?What could you do differently?Weigh up pros and cons of being assertiveDon’t give up at the first hurdleLook for win/win compromise solutions
34 In summary Make the right choice to: Professional DevelopmentIn summary Make the right choice to:Maximise the chance of you achieving the outcome you wantMinimise negative / destructive conflictMaintain your self respect and your respect for others34
35 Introduction to assertiveness Professional DevelopmentIntroduction to assertivenessPrepared by Suzanne Morton35