Scenario: Enough is Enough

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

A member bangs their hands on the table and stands angrily.

 

Tags: Action Learning Coach, WIAL Action Learning

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Comments (9)

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    krijn

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    I my opinion it is important to give the team the opportunity to handle the situation and not to take the team member aside. Therefor I would not try to call out the team member but call out his behavior. I think it is also important to reduce the tension in the group. Because this behavior goes right to the safe zone of the team I would intervene immediately and ask the team the three standard questions: How are we doing as a team? (scale of 1-10); What are we doing well?; What could we do better?. Then I would use the SID model (situation, impact, do) and ask: what is the impact of this kind of behavior on problem solving, mutual respect and team building. After that I would ask what the group could do to raise mutual respect and the performance level as a team.

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    Ivan Lam

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    I would allow the team to rectify that for a 5 minutes and observe the reaction of the other team members. If the situation is not rectified, I will ask the team to stop and think, “How is the team performing? 1-10, 1 is poor and 10 is excellent.” Then I ask, “What are the team doing best?” Then I will ask, “What could be the team doing better?” It is important to alert if the discussion atmosphere is affected by someone’s behaviour being rude to others. I will alert that not pointing to the person who bang on the table but will ask the team to think how to support the members who may need more help or understanding.

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    Michele

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    This action translate the frustration a team member experienced. Therefore it is important to give the space to this person the explain his problem. and to the team to understand this team member. I will ask the team how we are doing as a team and to translate it to a number form 1 to 10. what we do well, and what we can do better.
    I will ask what the impact is of this action on the group and invite the problem owner to explain what is happening. this will be the start for the next subsequent.

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    Jim Carter

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    This is a very sensitive issue. By observing the group the coach should have a fair idea as to how that frustration has surfaced. My guess is that this is a person who is having or has always had difficulty either being understood or heard in groups. The anger may be a trait that they are usued to acting out.

    Whilst it is usually advisable not to single out anyone, it is important that we acknowledge that such behaviour is unhelpful as well and may actually intimidate others in the group. The group will be looking to you probabaly for an appropriate intervention.

    With this in mind I think I would intervene on the lines of first acknowledging that sometimes when looking at problems we can get angry with a lack of progress or not being heard and then asking the group if there is a way we could understand these frutrations better. is there a question that someone may ask of the person that will begin the process of listening and sooth their concerns?

    I would avoid asking them to calm down, this usually ends up with the opposite happening. I would also be extremely cautious of appearing patronising. If someone’s temper is high then they may interpet your intervention as a further challenge.

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    lyeyk

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    It really spends on the group reactions to that person reaction.

    1) If the team members didn’t react, I won’t not intervene and allow the team to handle the situation. This could be an indication that team members are familiar with that person behaviours and have experience managing it.

    2) If members or the team reacted strongly back to the person, I would still observe what unfold. If the team is managing it okay, I would intervene later by asking:

    a) In a scale of 1-10, how the team manage the situation just now?
    b) What is the impact to the team with the way the team handle the situation?
    c) What we do better?

    If the team appear not to manage well, I would intervene by asking

    a) “Is the current situation the team is in helping us to solve the problem, YES/NO?”
    b) “What do each of you proposed we should do next?”
    c) Take the action that the team assessed that will support them.

    3) If the team appear to be afraid or not being able to stay productive, I would intervene soonest.

    a) “Is the current situation the team is in helping us to solve the problem, YES/NO?”
    b) “What do each of you proposed we should do next?”
    c) Take the action that the team assessed that will support them.

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    Timothy Low

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    I would watch and see how the team handles the situation and if the tension is building, I would intervene and ask the team to describe with ‘One Word’ how they are feeling at that point in time.
    Then on a scale of 1-10, how the team is doing?
    How is the quality of the questions? How to move the discussion and questioning to a higher scale if the score is below 5.
    Start the session again with who has the next question after diffusing the tension.

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    DrBea

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    I would intervene immediately as this is going to the safety of the team.

    I’d start with the 3 standard questions for two reasons. First to bring the level of tension down a bit and second in hopes that someone from the team identifies the situation.

    After asking the 3 standard questions:
    How are we doing as a team on a scale of 1 – 10?
    What are we doing well?
    What can we do better?

    I would likely not call out the behavior but think of the behavior I’d prefer to see in this situation. My first instinct is this is a respect issue – either towards or by the angry individual. With that in mind I’d go through the What? So What? Now What? sequence.

    How respectful are we being of each other views? (What)
    Why is it important that we respect each others views? (So what)
    How will we insure we respect the views of all members of this team? (Now what)

    I try very hard to always phrase my questions in the future positive to plant the seeds of where I’d like the team to perform.

    Happy Coaching
    Bea

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      Dennis Sanko

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      I agree with both Dr. Bea and Jim Carter: it is a potetially explosive situation and it requires immediate intervention. I would also do the “3 What” sequence. However, I believe that this situation may generate an insight (as many emotionally intence situations do), so I would look for an opportunity for learning both for the team and for the “angry member”.

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    Sridar

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    I will start by asking the team, what just happened? I will follow through by asking the team on how important is it to be respectful to team members good dynamics? then i will ask, team , what should we do now? and finally will ask the team , how can we ensure that such behaviour does not repeat.

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