Scenario: Multiple Levels

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

Every time the team seems close to getting to consensus a question is asked that takes them someplace else. You realize there are two levels that are being looked at – some participants are focused at a single group level (How do I address this with my group?), others at a corporate level (How do I address this with all groups?). 

Tags: Action Learning Coach, WIAL Action Learning

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Comments (6)

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    trongmai

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    As a Coach, I will manage to lead the team members through these questions:
    1. Situation :
    – Dear Team, we have been working for xx minutes on [this] and for some reasons we have not had the team’s consensus yet. What reason can you think that causes this?
    –> If the whole team members agree on the diversity of addressing targets, I will move into 2.
    –> If the whole team members see and share different point of view, I will lead them with following questions:
    — How many types of group are we trying to address to?
    — What are they (the groups)?
    — What are the difference between the groups that A, B, C address to, and D, E, F address to?

    2. Impact:
    — If we keep working this way, what will happen in the next yy minutes?
    — What happened when some people addressed to our group, and other people addressed to the all bigger groups?

    3. Decision:
    — In the next yy minutes, what does each team member think we should do to get better result?
    — How many points of discussion that you think the team discussed in the xx minutes ago and were close to consensus? –> What do you think we can do in the next yy minutes with those?

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  • Avatar

    MNicholas

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    I would first ask the members to each identify the level which they are looking at then ask the problem presenter what level he or she would like the solution to be applied on. After which i would attempt to get consensus on what level the collective group should be looking at before asking who has the next question.

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  • Avatar

    Michael

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    I would ask the group, “Do we have agreement on the problem we’re addressing?”

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  • Avatar

    Freddi

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    I would make the observation that is seems we do not have agreement on the problem area. This might be from varying perspectives. Let’s take a moment to rewrite what you think the problem is and this time add some specifics about your area of focus on the problem. Then check again with the group. If still no consensus, ask them, How do you want to get to consensus?

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  • Avatar

    DrBea

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    This is one of those that I would name –
    I’m hearing 2 levels to this problem. Is anyone else hearing that?
    Why is it important that we all be focused at the same level?
    How do we want to decide where to focus our energy for the rest of this session?

    Be careful checking in with the problem presenter. Frequently, the problem presenter is too close to the problem to be able to see it. The team needs to come up with a process for deciding where to focus.

    In the real life version of this one the team chose to take a vote. Focusing local won. Then they would look to see if it could be utilized elsewhere.

    Happy Coaching
    Bea

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  • Avatar

    Tiffany Maurycy

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    Creating the awareness, naming the behavior and asking the final question allowed the team to stop spinning and move toward action which was defined by them.

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