Scenario: Catching Up

As an action learning coach, how would you handle the following situation:

A team member isn’t participating. During the checkin they say that they were lost and confused by the discussion and they were trying to figure out what was going on.


Tags: Action Learning Coach, WIAL Action Learning

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Comments (4)

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    D'Arcy Dornan


    In my role as the action learning coach, I would ask the each member of the team how they rate the teamwork on a scale of 1 to 10. I would continue by using one of the ‘understanding’ questions (what the team is doing well/what the team could do better). Doing this would hopefully generate the perception by the others as to the lack of participation by the team member and encourage clarification of the discussion for all and continued full team participation.

    In going into the 2nd series of ‘group feeling’ questions, I would ask why it is important to have everyone in the group participating so as to underline the importance of the value of having a diversity of perspectives in the team. The hope here would be to encourage participation from all.

    The follow up question to the team could be: how we could assure that this happens in the group; perhaps inciting someone to ask the confused team member a question and or to actively engage this individual otherwise.


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    Helena Mihoko Miyahara


    As an Action Learning Coach I will ask to the group:
    – What is the benefit to register our questions on the flip chart?
    – What happens to the person who is more occupied by writing on the flip chart than to our questions?
    – What is the impact if one participant is focused in registering all the questions instead of being with the group asking questions to explore and solve the problem.
    The position of the group will be respected.


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    Since we are at a point in the intervention that this information has been shared I’d follow up with –

    Why is it important that we keep everyone engaged in the conversation?
    How do we want to handle this situation and the potential for future ones like it?

    Happy Coaching


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    lee anne


    Since this is already during an intervention, I will take this chance to drive learnings by following up with some of the questions as follows depending on the responses given.

    Team, we have a member that says they are not engaged because they are lost, confused and trying to figure out what is going on,

    – What is the importance of being observant about what is happening in the team and its individual members?
    – When this is observed, what can the team do to engage the person?
    – What is the impact of not having everyone on the same page?
    – How can we help ensure that everyone on the team is on the same page ?
    – What is the importance of making sure everyone is engaged in the discussion?
    – How can we ensure we engage everyone in the process?

    At the end of the session, I will ask,

    – What did we learn about the importance of having everyones commitment and engagement?
    – What did we learn is the impact/advantage of having everyone on the same page?
    – In future sessions, how can we handle situations like this better?


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