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Accommodating

Accommodating

Author: Marlene Johnson
Description:

At the end of this tutorial, the learner will understand how the accommodating conflict style presents itself in various situations

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Tutorial

Video Transcription

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Perhaps you know someone who always seems to put other people's needs before their own. Or perhaps that's the way you are, always thinking of others first. This is called accommodating. And it's actually one of the conflict styles. The accommodating style of conflict. I'm Marlene, and I'd like to discuss that style with you today.

So what is accommodating? Let's define it.

Accommodating is a conflict resolution style in which one party helps to meet another's needs at the expense of his or her own. So let's look at where that style goes here on this graph I have-- this grid.

There's an axis on this side for assertiveness and the axis down here is cooperativeness. Now, you notice accommodating is very high in cooperativeness, but it's very low in assertiveness. Low in assertiveness. So let's take a moment and look at those two terms a little more closely, assertiveness and cooperativeness.

So assertiveness is behavior in which a person confidently makes a statement without need of proof, affirming his or her rights without attacking another's. So you stand up for your own rights and what you're thinking or feeling, but you don't put down someone else.

Cooperativeness is behavior in which two parties work in concert to achieve their mutual and respective individual goals. So let's look at this accommodating style, and why it fits where it does here on this graph on these axes. So here are a couple of examples.

You have plans on the weekend to go out with friends again, and there's a movie you'd really like to see. You've been looking forward to seeing it, but your friend really wants to see something else. So you say, OK, we'll go to the movie you want to see. And you're really disappointed because, yeah, it was an OK movie but you didn't really want to see that movie. And it seems like you're always going to see what somebody else wants to see.

Or you're at work. And once again, you're in a team meeting. And they're divvying up some roles and they ask, who will be the secretary and take minutes and take notes? Nobody wants to do that. And nobody's volunteering. And so you start to feel a little comfortable and you say, well, I'll do it. And everybody smiles because, oh, thank you. Thank you. You always do it. You always do those things other people don't want to do. So those are a couple of examples of accommodating style of behavior in conflict.

So this particular style, as all styles, can have both positive or negative outcomes. Let's take a moment and look at positive and negative outcomes. First of all, we'll define that.

So positive and negative outcomes. Those are resolutions to a conflict that a party perceives as meeting his or her needs and/or reducing the likelihood of further conflict. That would be the positive outcome. Or not meeting his or her needs and/or increasing likelihood of further conflict. That will be a negative outcome. So let's take a look here at these two examples, positive and negative outcomes for each.

So the movie. Well, the positive outcome is your friend always like to hang out with you because you're fun. You like to do what she likes to do. And so that's a positive outcome.

And the negative outcome is that you never get to do what you want to do. You always feel like it's always what somebody else wants to do.

Meeting minutes. Positive outcome?

Team thinks you're a team player. You'll always pitch in and do what's needed. Good, old you, you're always there.

Negative outcome. You feel like all of these tasks are always falling on you. You don't know how to say no. You just don't know how to say no. So that would be a negative outcome there.

So it's important to remember that this accommodating style might be one that you tend towards, you feel comfortable with it. But it doesn't mean it's the only way that you can respond in a conflict. There are other conflicts styles. And you, as well as anyone, can respond in any number of ways to conflict. It's just that everyone has their own preferred style. And in some cases, accommodating might be that preferred style.

So thank you for being part of this tutorial, and I look forward to seeing you next time.

TERMS TO KNOW
  • Assertiveness

    Behavior in which a person confidently makes a statement without need of proof, affirming his/her rights without attacking another's.

  • Cooperativeness

    Behavior in which two parties work in concert to achieve their mutual and respective individual goals.

  • Positive/Negative Outcomes

    Resolutions to a conflict that a party perceives as meeting his/her needs and/or reducing likelihood of further conflict (positive) or not meeting his/her needs and/or increasing likelihood of further conflict(negative).

  • Accommodating

    A conflict resolution style in which one party helps to meet another's needs at the expense of his/her own.