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FIRO-B Maryland School of Public Policy Office of Executive Programs. FIRO-B: Theory, Interpretation and Linkages. Eugene R. (Geno) Schnell, Ph.D. faculty member with the Center for Leadership Education at the Johns Hopkins University 2336 Bright Leaf Way Baltimore, MD 21209

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FIRO-B

Maryland School of Public Policy

Office of Executive Programs


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FIRO-B:

Theory, Interpretation and Linkages

Eugene R. (Geno) Schnell, Ph.D.

faculty member with the Center for Leadership Education at the Johns Hopkins University

2336 Bright Leaf Way

Baltimore, MD 21209

410.585.1363

410.585.1367

[email protected]


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FIRO (rhymes with Cairo) =

Fundamental Interpersonal Relations Orientation

by William C. (Will) Schutz, Ph.D.

(Harvard, Berkeley, Albert Einstein Medical School, Antioch, Esalen)

draws primarily upon the ideas of

T.W. Adorno, Erich Fromm, and Wilfred Bion

Original Well-Known Measures

FIRO-B Behaviors

FIRO-F Feelings

LIPHE Life InterPersonal History Enquiry

MATE Marital Attitudes Evaluation

COPE Coping Operations Preference Enquiry


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Major Works

The Interpersonal Underworld, also FIRO: A Three Dimensional Theory of Interpersonal Relations (Science & Behavior Books, 1958/1966)

Joy – Grove Press, 1967

Here Comes Everybody – Harper & Row, 1971

The Human Element – Jossey-Bass, 1994

Recent Work (1982/1992)

Element B Behaviors

Element S Self-Concept

Levels of Truth

Team Concordance


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Popular Uses of the FIRO-B

  • Self-Awareness

  • Stress Management

  • Personal Coaching/Counseling

  • Career Counseling/Development

  • Team Building

  • Leadership Development

  • Culture Change

  • Conflict Management (team, interpersonal, marital)


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What is the FIRO-B?

the FIRO-B is focused on interpersonal relations

the FIRO-B is based on the idea the humans have interpersonal needs that underpin our interactions and, like other biological needs, non-satisfaction can lead to undesirable biological consequences

interpersonal needs are a product of both genetic predisposition and early imprinting in our family of origin, therefore are unlikely to change dramatically without significant intervention

interpersonal needs are deeply connected in a system of inter-relationship

people are likely to attach to behaviors and situations that satiate their needs




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Inclusion, Control or Affection?

Source: Judith Waterman


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  • Two forms of the basic need:

  • EXPRESSED toward others

    • how much I want to demonstrate the behavior

    • active, easily seen and mutually agreed upon

    • something I initiate toward others by my words or actions

  • WANTED from others

    • how much I desire to receive the behavior

  • (want others to behave toward me)

    • usually more passive, elicited, or arranged to happen

    • something I rely on others to do, say, or convey to me

  • note: willing to accept or tolerate may not be the same as wanted

  • Expressed Versus Wanted Needs


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    The FIRO-B Model

    Source: Schnell, E. (2000)Participating in Teams. CPP: Palo Alto


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    Six-Cell Model

    for any of the six cells, results range from 0 to 9

    for purposes of interpretation, scores of

    0, 1, and 2 are considered in the LOW range

    3, 4, 5, and 6 are considered in the MEDIUM range

    7, 8, and 9 are considered in the HIGH range

    Looking at Heather, what would be the range for each of her 6 cells?


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    Factors That Can Influence Scores

    • Scoring errors

    • Language/vocabulary problems

    • Cultural issues affecting the expression of needs

    • Environmental pressure to behave in defined ways

    • Faking

    • Important life events


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    What Do the Ranges Mean?

    Medium

    • the associated descriptions are noticeably characteristic of your interpersonal relations

    • the associated behaviors or desires would be displayed by you in particular situations (depends exactly on who and where and why you are interacting with them)

    • you remain highly flexible in figuring out how you will behave or what you can expect

    • you avoid situations that require that you constantly behave or rely on others in a particular way


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    Another Way to Represent FIRO-B Results

    scores of 9, 8, 7 represent

    90, 80 or 70% of the time, you express/want these behaviors

    (this is turns out to be most of the time, no matter where you are or who you are with)

    scores of 6, 5, 4, 3 represent

    60, 50, 40 or 30% of the time, you express/want these behaviors

    (this turns out to be like a light switch – sometimes you are “on” when the people and situation is right and other times your are “off” when the people or situation doesn’t match)

    scores of 2 and 1 represent

    20 or 10% of the time, you express/want these behaviors

    (this is not very much of the time, no matter where you are or who you are with)

    scores of 0 represent

    1-5% of the time, you express/want these behaviors

    (this is pretty rarely, even if the people or situation changes)


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    Exercise

    Imagine being in a group where everyone had the same result on one of the FIRO-B dimensions. Focusing just on that dimension, what would it be like to be in this group?

    (1) Describe the climate of the team – what would it feel like to work with these people?

    (2) List specific behaviors that you would see that would typify the group.

    (3) In what ways would the group likely be highly effective (e.g., types of tasks, aspects of a project, or phase(s) of a decision process)?

    (4) In what ways would the group likely be less effective (e.g., what types of tasks, aspects of a project, or phase(s) of a decision process)?


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    The Team of FIRO-Bs

    Guess the most likely FIRO-B scores (only one dimension) of people who are related to a baseball team:


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    Correlations Between the FIRO-B Scales and Selected Adjectives

    Source: Oxford Psychologists Press

    Note: n = 1,632; all correlations significant at p = .05




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    Research on the FIRO-B and Leadership Adjectives

    • Higher scores on eC are associated with higher self-ratings of leadership effectivenesss

    • Higher scores on wC are associated with lower self-ratings of leadership effectiveness

    • Higher scores on eC are associated with higher ratings of Initiating Structure; Higher scores on all other FIRO-B scales are associated with Consideration


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    From Benchmarks Research (Self-Ratings) Adjectives

    Expressed Inclusion: leading subordinates, setting a developmental climate, building and mending relationships, compassion and sensitivity, putting people at ease, acting with flexibility’

    Expressed Control: decisiveness

    Wanted Control: difficulty molding a staff, difficulty making strategic transitions

    Expressed Affection: resourcefulness, leading subordinates, setting a developmental climate, building and mending relationships, compassion and sensitivity, self-awareness, putting people at ease, acting with flexibility, (and a negative relationship with confronting problems with interpersonal relationships and difficulty molding a staff)

    Wanted Affection: compassion and sensitivity, putting people at ease (and negatively related to confronting problems with interpersonal relationships and difficulty molding a staff)


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    MBTI/FIRO-B Research Hypotheses Adjectives

    Expected Relationships:

    Extraversion - Expressed & Wanted Inclusion

    Feeling - Expressed & Wanted Affection

    Sensing - Wanted Control

    Judging - Expressed Control


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    Correlation of FIRO-B Scores with MBTI Form G Continuous Scores in Two Samples of Managers and Leaders

    Source: Hammer and Schnell (1997)




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    Organization of Leadership Report within FIRO-B Dimensions

    Overall Leadership Orientation

    Facets of Your Leadership Style (type-based)

    Your Leadership Approach (preferences x strongest needs)

    Basic Interpretation of FIRO-B & MBTI Results, including role preferences

    Interpersonal Relations

    How Interaction Affect Your Leadership (total need score x E-I preference)

    What You Show First in Leadership (highest expressed, dominant extraverted function)

    Working With Groups and Other Leaders

    How You Work in a Team (FIRO-B based)

    What You Expect from Other Leaders (highest/lowest wanted need, temperament)

    Power and Organizational Culture

    Your Bases of Power and Influence (strongest interpersonal need)

    Your Influence on Organizational Culture (function pair, strongest/weakest total need)

    Dealing With Change and Stress (type and FIRO-B based)

    Action Plan (based on type and FIRO-B)


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