top of page


Updated: Jan 6, 2020

When it comes to tasks - whether it's doing a project at work, purchasing a family car, or just balancing the checkbook - the styles who are drawn to one another socially don't necessarily attract as much as they compete, or even conflict.

Now their similarities can get in the way because they have the same needs. After all, to complete a task, one must have resources, rewards, time, space, and attention. But there's only so much of those to go around.

So when those needs aren't met, tension and conflict can result. When one partner feels a need to "win," for instance, the other one may sense he or she's been shortchanged. The frequent outcome: resentment.

But, before getting into which pairs clash, let's look at the most naturally compatible combinations taskwise:

Compliant-Steady Styles

Dominant-Steady Styles

Interactive-Steady Styles

See a pattern here? You bet! The Steady Style gets along with everybody in a task situation. He or she's the universal antidote for disharmony. It's the Steady Style's most distinctive trait. They're supportive workers who exert a calming, stabilizing influence. Naturally interested in others and in making a contribution, they enjoy being productive partners. No wonder they're everybody's favorite.

The moderately compatible combinations, as far as working on tasks together, are:

Compliant-Compliant Styles

Steady-Steady Styles

Interactive-Compliant Styles

Compliant Styles loom large in this second grouping.

While not as easygoing as Steady Styles, they are sensitive to others' feelings and have a passion for excellence that others usually recognize.

Interestingly, Compliant Styles figure in many of the least compatible combinations socially, but among the highest in tasks. This suggests that others appreciate the quality and thoroughness of their work, even if the Compliant Styles aren't always viewed as being a lot of laughs.

Last come those combinations that are least compatible because they tend to see one another as competitors: Dominant-Dominant Styles

Dominant-Compliant Styles

Dominant-Interactive Styles

Interactive-Interactive Styles

Dominant-Dominant Style combinations work fairly well socially but when it comes to tasks, a Dominant Style's competitive nature and need for control can stymie cooperation, especially with like-minded Dominant Styles.

As for the Dominant-Compliant Styles, there's a fundamental clash in the Dominant Style's need for speed and control versus the Compliant Style's penchant for being slower paced and systematic.

Notice that while the Interactive-Interactive pair was ranked as among the most socially compatible, now they are likely to be the least productive as far as working together on tasks. That's because neither is motivated to deal with task details.

Similarly, Dominant Styles and Interactive Styles also have moderately high social rapport but plummet to the lowest rungs of compatibility when tasks are involved.

That's because they both tend to want to delegate.

But don't give up yet on those whose personal style may not be a perfect fit with the situation. With some effort at

understanding and applying The Platinum Rule, you can adapt your compatibility so that you can work successfully with anyone.

3 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page