[Opinion] Fear and Power

In a conflict there are two primary movers: Fear and Power.


Fear moves a conflict forward, or backward, or to the side, through resistance, panic, aggressiveness, and avoidance.

Power moves a conflict forward, or backward, or to the side, through domination, aggressiveness, passive-aggressiveness, and outright confrontation.

In many organizations, departments, teams, committees and even individuals, make decisions about changes and innovations as a result of their perceptions about both fear and power. This leads to a lack of genuine leadership, work being done badly (or not at all) and innovation being stymied.

Unfortunately, as long as people are around to create hierarchical chains of command, fear and power will be the two prime movers of conflict. The key thing to understand is that the party who uses fear and power as a primary mover in a conflict, is looking for a preprogrammed, evolutionary response from the other party. When a different response is provided, then the balance of fear and power shifts, from the instigator to the respondent.

This is the dance of conflict, driven by fear and power, and when the balance is successfully tipped—or shifted—the game changes.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *