Scenario: Self Conversation

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

Someone answers their own question, without waiting for a response from anyone else.

Tags: Action Learning Coach

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Comments (10)

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    murmac

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    I would ask the group: I have noticed that the person (and use their name) answered his/her own question and whether anyone else in the group made the same observation. Assuming the group said ‘yes’, I would then ask what impact this has on the team, and then following that, ask how the team wanted manage this. I would assume that one or more members of the team would ask the person not to answer their own question in future, explaining that it impacts negatively on the outcomes of the session.

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    Teresa

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    I would ask the questioner to repeat the question and ask the group, “Does anyone else have an opinion on this?”

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    michelleockers@gmail.com

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    If it’s the first instance I would go with a similar approach to Teresa and ask “Would someone else like to answer the question?” – which may be enough to remind the person of the ground rule. If it had happened several times then I would do something similar to Murmac’s suggestion. Would be ironic if the person had nominated “not answering my own questions” as the leadership skill they wanted to work on during the session!

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    Karen Honold

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    Another approach may be to ask “Are you answering a question or asking a question?” If it continues I would ask at a check in point “How are we doing with tapping the knowledge in the room?”

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    Sarah Weaver

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    Depending on the situation, I could take a few different approaches. As Michelle mentioned, if this is the first and only time that it occurs, I would probably let it go. Maybe the questioner asked something that had already been answered and only realized it after they asked the question out loud. However, if this is a continuous behavior from this person and it seems to be affecting the team, I would handle it similar to Murmac as well by asking the three levels of questions to the team.

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    Gideon

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    I will have the class repeat the two basic rules of Action Learning and then ask them how we are doing about them.

    I will then ask how we are doing about asking questions and allowing others to answer. Depending on the response I will add what impact can not giving everyone opportunities answer and contribute have on resolving the problem at hand and generation of new ideas.

    I might also directly intervene by tactfull asking the person “which question are you answering now or whose question are you responding to now?” This I think will help to bring the person and the whole group to realization.

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    DrBea

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    Great responses. The rule is simply that a statement can only be made in response to a question. There isn’t a rule that says a person cannot answer their own question.

    I would use the standard 3 questions – 1) How are we doing as a team on a scale of 1-10? 2) What are we doing well? 3) What can we do better?
    If the team didn’t identify the situation I would start with –
    I’ve observed responses to questions being given initially by the person that posed the question, did anyone else notice this? What’s the impact on the team when we respond to our own question before giving others a chance to respond? How do we want to handle it? Why is it imprtant that we seek the views of others first?

    Happy Coaching
    Bea

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    Lye Chon Seng

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    I would intervene to reiterate the advantage of inviting more question from others. By doing so, we will diversify possible solution and avoid early convergent.Then I will ask the team to have next question to continue the learning process.

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    Colleen Carruthers

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    I liked the idea of simply asking “Who else has an answer to this question”. If this happened again, I would restate the rules.

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      Dr Yvonne Sum

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      I like the minimal intervention approach by Colleen here.

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