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The LIFO Method 4 Behavioral Styles


Continuing my discussion of the LIFO Method which focuses on strengths of leaders, teams, and all individuals. The approach is about increasing self-awareness and providing strategies for managing one’s strengths to achieve greater productivity. LIFO also encourages appreciating and working with others whose strengths are different from our own.


The LIFO Method identifies behavioral style preferences, not personality types. It focuses on ‘what we do’ as opposed to ‘who we are.’ Everyone has all the four behavioral orientations. It is how one uses those strengths that makes us different from one another.


The graphic above illustrates the four orientations. The names at the bottom are those originally developed by Atkins and Katcher who originated the LIFO Method. Today, many practitioners of LIFO use the HEAR model to represent the behavioral preferences of seeking ‘Harmony,’ striving for ‘Excellence,’ being ‘Action’ oriented, and employing ‘Reason.’


We are not any one style, each of us is a mixture of all four, but we tend to use one or two most of the time.


LIFO looks at our preferred styles under two situations: 1) favorable conditions when things are going well; and 2) unfavorable conditions when we operate under stress or conflict. As noted in my previous post discussing the Strengths-Weakness Paradox, most people shift their use of styles when under stress.


We are also sometimes surprised at the outcome of an encounter with someone even when we believe we are doing the right thing. One additional feature within LIFO is that it reveals a breakdown between our ‘Intention’ to behave in a certain way, our actual ‘Behavior,’ and our perceived ‘Impact’ of that behavior. This can be very useful input in our search to become more effective relating to others.

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