The New Johari Window #3: Locus of Control

The New Johari Window #3: Locus of Control

Given that Daniel is often negotiating with leaders from other organizations about purchases for his company, this discrepancy is a source of great concern. Sometimes, Daniel tends to over-estimate the power of his ignorant self (Quad 2-E), indicating that he is never able to hold a secret (Quad 1-E) and doesn’t even realize that he is giving everything aware through his nonverbal communication (Quad 2-E). Daniel often concludes that he can’t be trusted with information about his company’s financial status when discussing prices and terms with a vendor. He believes that he always “gives away the store,” when in fact he often is able to negotiate a fair price for products he purchases for his company. At other times, Daniel distorts in the opposite direction. He believes that he is being a clever negotiator (Quad 1-I), when, in fact, the furrowing of his brow indicates to vendors that he is holding back financial information and is not yet at the lowest possible price (Quad I-E). Daniel needs a performance coach to help him modulate his sense of self or at least he needs a colleague to join him in the field and give him supportive feedback when he is being effective as a negotiator. This process of distortion based on the effort to resolve cognitive dissonance is an important, and often overlooked, aspect of human relationships. I will examine this distorting process in several different ways throughout this series of essays.

There is a third problem associated with the internal/external gap. This concerns the ongoing intra-psychic and interpersonal tensions that are likely to be precipitated by the gap. These tensions are exacerbated by the unpredictability and distortion I just mentioned; yet the misalignment inevitably creates tensions even without these other two problems. Both Elizabeth and Daniel feel very uncomfortable about their interpersonal relationships at work. Elizabeth has often considered leaving her position as a manager because of the tensions caused by her inconsistent and unpredictable supervision of subordinates. Daniel also feels considerable tension—mostly conflict within himself—about whether or not he is letting down his company during the negotiations. He is considering another career in which he doesn’t have to be as “secretive.”

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William Bergquist

William BergquistWilliam Bergquist, Ph.D. An international coach and consultant, professor in the fields of psychology, management and public administration, author of more than 45 books, and president of a graduate school of psychology. Dr. Bergquist consults on and writes about personal, group, organizational and societal transitions and transformations. His published work ranges from the personal transitions of men and women in their 50s and the struggles of men and women in recovering from strokes to the experiences of freedom among the men and women of Eastern Europe following the collapse of the Soviet Union. In recent years, Bergquist has focused on the processes of organizational coaching. He is coauthor with Agnes Mura of coachbook, co-founder of the International Journal of Coaching in Organizations and co-founder of the International Consortium for Coaching in Organizations. His graduate school (The Professional School of Psychology: www.psychology.edu) offers Master and Doctoral degrees in both clinical and organizational psychology to mature, accomplished adults.

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