Scenario: Finish Up Written by DrBea on December 22, 2014. Posted in WIAL Action Learning, WIAL Talk As an action learning coach, how would you handle the following situation: The team wants the last 15 minutes to finish up the problem instead of doing the final reflection. Tags: Action Learning Coach Trackback from your site. Comments (6) Michael Bloemendal December 22, 2014 at 7:43 am | # This is a complicated question. Reflection is an indispensable element of Action Learning. But terminating the session abruptly, when the team has the feeling they are close to finishing up the problem might be damaging for the trust of the team members and their sponsors in the methodology. Moreover, it is questionable whether the team can finishing up the problem as easy in a next session (if there is one) as now. Therefore I would ask them whether they really believe it to be a good idea to skip the reflection. When they persist in their opinion, I would ask them about the fundamentals of Action Learning. On the basis of their answer, I would tell them that hence skipping of the reflection is not a good idea. Then I would ask, whether someone had an idea how to do both the finishing up of the problem and the reflection. (Personally, but I won’t tell them in advance, I can think of three possibilities, viz. continuing for an extra 15 minutes, spending part of the remaining time on finishing up the problem and part on reflection, and/or continuing by digital contact). Certainly, I will reflect for my self on my time management, as I had to foresee the dilemma and should have intervened earlier. Reply Jane Lewis December 26, 2014 at 6:32 pm | # Actions happen in a context, a continuum, a flow and from the initial contact with the client, I am a part of how things grow and develop. When I read these scenarios, my own thoughts go to “What happened before that, … and before that?” What led to this act we are presented? What was my initial, and then updated understanding with the client? These are the things that will inform me as a coach of my next action, and much of that information is liminal, it’s energetic, it’s felt-sense. In other words, it’s before the mind, yet the answer here is invited from the mind. A challenge! And for the sake of this WIALTalk exercise, let me imagine any possible situation that I could be a part of where such action would happen (quite a challenge, since the basics of Action Learning would have been covered and lived-out from the very first client conversation – and the client themselves would have articulated the value of reflection, often delightedly many times, before the session even begun.) May I reframe the question asked to the one I hear? It’s this: In a true situation with you as coach the team presents a proposal to use the remaining 100% of the time (“the last 15 min.”) to work exclusively on the problem to the exclusion of reflection time (“instead of doing the final reflection”). What would you do? Please articulate one possible set of actions you could take? OK. Q: What is a possible scenario with me as coach where this would happen? A: I was set up with a “bomb” during a WIAL training of some sort. Q: What can I now imagine actually doing? A: Jump intuitively into the unknown. That’s actually what I do. Lots of context but no pre-determined path. Q: What’s one possible way you would jump? A: Here’s the picture I now get. I might … laugh heartily. Ask them openly and lightly if they are serious and look around at everyone. If everyone seems to be saying yes, ask them what they have previously found the benefit of reflection to be. After benefits are named, ask how they will arrange to get these benefits in their proposed plan. When the group is in alignment with itself on how to do that, smile, move back from the table and ask: Who has the next question? Reply yeelaifong December 29, 2014 at 3:55 am | # As a coach, I will remind the team about the objective of the action learning session, which I would have mentioned upfront at the start of the action learning project and secured their commitment before we started ->that is, the learning component (team reflection) is just as important as the action component (problem solving). Without compromising on the final reflection, I will ask the team if they were prepared to extend the session, say, by another 15 minutes, so that they can wrap up the problem definition (assuming they have yet to reach agreement on the problem); and still have time for final reflection. Assuming this project carries on with several more action learning sessions, they can continue to work on the problem at the next session. At the next session, I will again remind them of their commitment to give equal attention to the learning component (final reflection). Reply firstname.lastname@example.org January 19, 2015 at 4:31 am | # Depends . If the group is in a flow, I think I would let them finish the job. Before saying goodbye I would ask them how we could contain the reflection on this meeting? If nobody has any time left to discuss, what is an other option? I think it is interesting to learn how people find other ways to reflect. May be they start a ‘team talk’ to do so ..?!! Reply DrBea February 4, 2015 at 5:35 pm | # As has been said – reflection is a key element of Action Learning and that final one takes what we’ve learned and cements it so we take it back with us. Assuming I did not have a hard stop – I would ask the team if anyone had a hard stop or if we could extend by 15 minutes to accomplish both. If we had to wrap up, I would do the final reflection including questions how we will manage our time in the future to finish in the time we’ve allotted? How we might continue the discussion after the reflection to finish up the last little bit? I too would reflect on how I as the coach could have managed the time better to avoid the situation in the first place. Happy Coaching Bea Reply Bhagwan February 13, 2017 at 2:18 pm | # As a coach, my time management would be the important aspect to such situation. Early intervention would be beneficial to the team and get them to focus on the problem after getting consensus. In this scenario, I will address the issue back to the team getting their consensus if they want to extend the time. As the time goes I will ensure that reflection part is not missing out, as it is the key component of the process. 1. Teams in the scale of 1-10 where are we to the solution of the problem? 2. What happens to the learning of team member if we skipped the reflection part? 3. Does the team want to extend time to complete the process? Reply Leave a comment You must be logged in to post a comment.