Scenario: Leading Questions

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

A participant is convinced of the true nature of the problem and repeats the same questions over and over in an effort to persuade the others, even after others have made it clear that they don’t agree. Others are seeing what this person is advocating as another symptom – not the real problem.

Tags: Action Learning Coach, WIAL Action Learning

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Comments (16)

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    Somnuk

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    I will ask the following questions to the team

    “Dear team, what is the quality of our questions at this time?”

    Then I will ask the team to write the problem.
    “Do we have clarity and agreement on this problem? Could we write it down.”

    Later, I will ask each participant to read what he/she wrote.
    Follow by asking whether they have agreement on the problem. Yes or No.

    After that, I will ask. What could we do better as a group? Any suggestions?

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Balan Dass

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    As an AL coach, I would go back to the team to have a status scale check from 1-10. Having done that, I would ask the team members to share , what we are doing beast and least and what shall we do. Having done that I would request the team to re-write and read the same to the team and check with the problem presenter whether any of the question re-phrased is what he has written down. Again I would go around the team members to check whether they are on the same page. At point I would share a learning point/reflection, telling the team that we should differentiate between the forest and the trees. With that, ‘who has the next question’

    Balan Dass

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    Madelaine Melberg

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    As the Action Learning coach I would intervene and ask the group “How are we doing as a group (1-10). What are we doing well? What can we be doing better?”. I would then ask “What is the quality of our questions?” Are we asking questions that are coming from a place of genuine curiosity? Are we asking any leading questions? Are we building on each other’s questions? Why or why not? What is the value of building on each other’s questions?” I would then ask them to write down the problem and read them and ask if there is agreement. If not, then ask “who has the next question?”. This should enable the team to surface the dynamic of the person asking the same question over and over and most importantly to learn as a group why this is counter-productive.

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    Robert Jordan

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    I would intervene and ask the team to rate the quality of the questions being asked by the group. I would suspect that one or more of the groups members would suggest that open-ended questions might work better than leading questions design to elicit support for a point-of-view of one of the members. I would let the group members work it out.

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    Shiryll Go

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    As the AL coach in this given scenario, I would intervene by asking how close the team is in solving the problem and if everyone is in agreement to the problem.
    Then I will ask them to write down and share afterwards, what they think the problem is.
    Whether they be in agreement or not, i see this now as a learning opportuninty for them as they reflect on questions such as:
    – How will the quality of the solution be impacted if we continue to ask leading question?
    – What did we learn here that can be applied to your work or daily life?

    Then would I move forward with the session by asking:
    “Now, who has the next question?”

    Reply

  • Avatar

    fbolden@cambionow.net

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    As an AL coach I would make a standard intervention, making some observations: 1) amount of time spent w/o an agreement on the problem and 2) a team dynamic…one person is dominating.
    Remind the team that leading questions are not allowed. I may ask this participant…What is it about this situation/condition that makes it a problem?

    Check in with team asking:
    1) Rate how the group is doing from 1-10?
    2) What are we doing well?
    3) What can we do better?
    4) Does the team have agreement on the problem? Write down your current understanding of what the problem is.

    After everyone has shared…Do we have agreement or not? Thank you…Now who has the first question?

    Reply

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    Sylvia

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    1st option:
    After asking the prior traditional intervention questions I would check if the group believes that this one person is trying to persuade (or else) them by asking them: “What is the impact on our team if a person keeps on repeating the same questions or statements?” / What can we do in order to solve it?”
    Then: “What is the impact on our productivity if a person keeps on repeating the same questions or statements?” / What can we do in order to solve it?”

    Reply

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    Christina Wong

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    As a coach, I would do the following:
    1) Intervene and ask the team how they were doing for the scale of 1-10.
    2) Ask what they have done well and what could have done better.
    3) Ask them to re-write the problem statement and read it out individually
    4) Ask if there is any consensus to the problem statement.
    5) If everyone agrees, I would ask “Who has the first question?”

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Wendy Reus

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    As a coach I would ask
    Do we have agreement on what the problem is?
    Ask them to write it down and share
    Ask again if we have agreement
    if yes, then “Who has the next question?”
    if no “What is the impact of that”?

    Reply

  • Avatar

    DrBea

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    Remembering to stay focused on the behavior and not an individual –

    I would ask the 3 standard questions – How are we doing as a team? What are we doing well? What can we do better?

    In this situation I fully expect a team member would bring it up. But if they don’t?

    I would ask –
    What is the quality of our questions?
    Why is it important that we ask great questions?
    How can we ask new and different great questions to help us discover the real problem we should be addressing as a team?

    Happy Coaching
    Bea

    Reply

  • Avatar

    roy.sijabat

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    As the action learning coach, I will do the following :
    1. I will interfere the team because base on my observation the team not have same aggreement, with following question : “Team, what happen now ?”, and some of the team member will explain what’s going on.
    2. After that, I will ask the impact for the team, with following question : “And, what is the impact for the team now about that repeated question ?”
    3a. If some of the team member said it is good for the team or something like that, then I will allow the team to continue.
    3b. If some of the team member said it is no really support the team or something like that, I will help the team back to the track, with following question : “And team, what will the team do to handle the repeated question ?”, and some of the team members will give their own.
    4. After that, I will tell the team about the time left and remind them about their own leadership competency, with statement : “so team, we have X minutes left and please start question base on your leadership competency”, and the team will learn how to solve that kind situation and continue the discussion.

    Thank you.

    Reply

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    Romy Frida Mariani

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    Assuming it is happen on the first 10 minutes of the session. firstly I will intervene by asking how are we doing as a group so far? on the scale 1-10. Assuming that the score is very low, then I will continue by asking what is happening that the score is only #. then continue what can we do to improve the score? Then I will let them to continue the discussion by asking who has next question. Then after a while I will do another intervene by asking do we have an agreement to the problem. Lets write it down and ask them to read what they had written one by one.
    But if it is happen on the first 15 -20 minutes, after asking that same questions as above, I will directly asking them to write down the problem statement and read it one by one, than ask them whether they have an agreement to the problem. Then continue the discussion, who has the next question.

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    Ma. Angela Beltran

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    As an AL Coach, I will do an intervention by asking, “Team, what is happening now?” Since the ‘others are already seeing what this person is advocating as another symptom,’ someone may be vocal enough to get straight to the point and express their observation. I will then ask, “What is the impact for you as a team if the same questions are asked over and over?,” and “What can we do better?” to get the team to move forward since the objective is to get everyone in the team to agree on what the problem is. I cannot discount the probability that the person who has repeated questions may be on to something, i.e., the real problem, and that the rest of the team may have fallen into groupthink.

    Without getting into Facilitator Mode, I will also get a consensus even if it has already been done earlier in the session by asking the team to write down what they all think the real problem is so as not to alienate the person who keeps on asking the same questions. Each of them will once again read what they wrote and if the person still has a different answer from the rest, I will ask, “Who has the next question?” while reminding them about the time.

    Reply

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    ChauChyiTai

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    I would first ask: “Team, what do you notice about a question that is being asked repeatedly by a teammate over and over again?”
    This is to raise the awareness of the phenomenon of an unresolved disagreement here.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Azri Amin Bin Basir Ahmad

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    As an AL coach, I would ask the team what is the impact to the team that arises from the repeated question and do the team agree with the question. Would it be benefit the team to revolve around the same question or move on.

    Reply

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    Thitis

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    I would ask how close the team is in solving the problem and if everyone is in agreement to the problem
    1. I would ask “What is the quality of our questions?
    2. What is the value of building on each other’s questions?
    3. I would then ask them to write down the problem and read if there is agreement.
    4. Who has the next question?

    Reply

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