Scenario: Extended Break

As an Action Learning Coach how would you handle the following situation:

The team agreed to a 15 minute break, it’s 30 minutes before you get everyone back in the room and ready to restart.

 

Tags: Action Learning Coach, WIAL Action Learning

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Comments (8)

  • Avatar

    AlvinSim

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    As their AL coach, I will ask:

    1. How are we doing as a team so far?
    2. We agreed to come back after a 15-minute break but the team took 30 minutes to do so. What is the impact to the team if members take longer time than expected to come together?
    3. What could we do better as a team?

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Sofia Georgiadou

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      Now that we are all back I would like to ask:
      Has anyone noticed the duration of your break? …
      What was your initial agreement? …..
      What is the impact to the team of not adhering to your agreement? ….
      How would you like to handle similar situations as a team going forward?

      Reply

  • Avatar

    Michele

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    As their AL coach, I ‘ll do:
    – Ask their attention for the fact that an agreement is not followed up.
    – Ask if there is a reason to do so?
    – Ask is that reason has any influence on the quality of the AL session?
    – if yes: invite the owners of the reason to start the session with sharing that reason with the group and then invite the group to participate tho the session.
    – if no: ask commitment of the group to stick to a made appointment and start the AL session

    Reply

  • Avatar

    CeesOBI

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    When they are reassembled in the room, as theur AL Coach I will ask:
    * What is the reason ( the reasons) that the previous arrangement on the time limit of the break, is not followed up?
    How the subset like to coop with the situation ! Will it be possible to renew the group’s commitment to the time arrangement.
    If Commitment is expressed and confirmed, the AL process will continue.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Colin Yeow

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    I would ask the team “We are starting 15 minutes behind schedule. What is the impact on the session?” If the comments are generally not positive, the follow on question would be “As a team, what can we do differently in the future?” If there are no negative comments, we will proceed with the process.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    DrBea

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    As an AL coach I’m not particularly concerned as to the reasons the members are late. I would stay focused on the agreement that had been made –

    I’ve observed we are starting 15 minutes later than we had agreed to, did anyone else notice that?
    What’s the impact on the team when we don’t adhere to the agreements that we make?
    How do we want to handle our breaks from now on?

    This leaves it completely to the team to determine what they want to do. They may decide that 15 minutes is not an adequate break time and they will make the breaks 30 minutes. They may decide to start with whoever is present. They may come up with other creative solutions. As the coach it’s my job to bring it to awareness and to allow the team to determine what is best for their processing.

    Happy Coaching
    Bea

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Faz_Kamaruddin

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    Thanks for that reminder, Dr Bea – it helps me as coach to focus on the right things when I focus more on the agreement that the team had made earlier, instead of why they are late.

    I would state my observation: I notice that we came back later than we agreed to earlier. And also ask Did anyone else notice that?

    By asking the group What is the impact of this to the team? – I would get a clearer sense of how the group views break times and agreements – they may have to handle emails during the breaks and as a coach I would rather have them clear those during those times instead of being distracted when they are back at the table.

    I would also leave it to the group to decide how to manage their breaks from this point on, as this is driving them to own the actions and the learning.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    xyvivien

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    I think as an Action Learning coach, we need to learn suspend our judgment. In my previous experience, I will mostly like get emotional due to my judgment of the situation. So I will be very cautious on this part, so I will probably observe what people are doing during break and see if there’s any specific unavoidable or extraordinary cases to make the break extended…

    If no specific reason, right before we start, I will ask the team ‘What just happened?’ if people bring up this getting late from break issue, I will follow with the question ‘What’s the impact on the whole session?’ ‘what’s the impact on our team dynamic?’ After people realize the situation, I will ask ‘What we can learn from this?’ ‘What alignment we need to have regarding this issue?’ ‘What action we can take to avoid extended breaks?’ — As AL coach, we truly need to kick the ball back to team and build on their learning opportunities from each incidence.

    Reply

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