Blogs By
Ralph H. Kilmann

Addressing the four timeless topics: conflict,
change, consciousness, and transformation

Over the course of many years, I gradually came to realize that the particular words and phrases that a person uses to talk about (or write about) their core beliefs on any topic—specifically, whether they acknowledge the INHERENT UNCERTAINTY in the universe—has much do with whether other people (1) immediately ignore (and perhaps even demean) what was just communicated to them or (2) are wide open to fully incorporating those recent statements into their own knowledge base and belief system....

Groupthink is a diversion from reality. It allows a group to think they are on the right path (effectively resolving a complex problem or making a difficult decision) simply because all the group members AGREE on the same position. This group-wide agreement becomes a substitute for reality: “If we all agree, we must be right.” If any member argues against the group’s popular approach to the task at hand, the rest of the group applies strong social pressure to conform....

The immediate benefit of taking the TKI and reviewing your results (which includes a personalized report with the online version of the assessment) is AWARENESS: You learn which conflict modes you might be using too much (usually out of habit) and which ones you might be using too little (since you have not been exposed to the many positive uses of your underutilized modes)....

Ever since mid-March 2020, when the first U.S. lockdowns took effect as the coronavirus began ravaging the globe, the shift from in-person learning to online platforms has been rapidly accelerating. In fact, soon after those initial mandated lockdowns took effect, live training programs in organizations and face-to-face interactions in colleges and universities were abruptly cancelled. For the next few months, companies and colleges were struggling with how to shift from their previous utilization of in-person programs in one physical location to some type of online virtual technology on the World Wide Web....

I spent 30 years as a professor in the Katz Graduate School of Business, University of Pittsburgh, where I created all my theories and methods for helping organizations achieve long-term success. My various creations can be sorted into eight tracks for quantum transformation: culture, skills, teams, strategy-structure, reward systems, and the three approaches to process management (gradual process, radical process, and learning process improvement)....

Take some quiet time to reflect on how approaches to achieve organizational success have evolved since the industrial revolution, particularly with regard to the progression of human skills that have been sought after, brought into the workplace, and then rewarded if used to accomplish the organization’s goals....

During the past few decades, I’ve introduced organizations and their members to such timeless topics as self-awareness, mindfulness, consciousness, subtle energy, and mind/body/spirit modalities. These topics are often pursued outside an organization, in an individual’s person life, but these same topics are often taboo to discuss (or consider) in the workplace. And yet, these timeless topics have everything to do with a person’s wellbeing...

In most organizations, there usually is a silent, rarely discussed set of CULTURAL NORMS (also called “rules of the road” or, more simply, “how we do things around here”). These actual norms of behavior can significantly discourage members from discussing their mental health challenges with their colleagues, including anything having to do with their anxieties, fears, doubts, traumas, nightmares, illnesses, addictions, etc. that interfere with their sleep, concentration, well-being, and happiness....

Why does one organization have a very adaptive culture while another has a culture that lives in the past? Is one a case of good fortune and the other a result of bad luck? On the contrary, it seems that any organization can find itself with an outdated culture if its culture is not being managed explicitly....