Scenario: Side Conversation

As an Action Learning Coach how would you handle the following situation: As you are opening the session and you start by reinforcing the ground rules. While you are speaking two participants start chatting (they’ve been in many session and already know the rules).  

Tags: Action Leaning, Action Learning, Action Learning Coach, WIAL, WIAL Action Learning, WIAL Talk

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Comments (9)

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    Changguang Zou

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    I would kindly invite these chatting participants to share their knowledge about the ground rules, i.e. “I notice there are two menbers of out team who have been in many sessions, that’s good for us. Would you please speak out the ground rules for us, Mr/Ms Participant A?” When they finish the rules, I would appriciate their answer, and move on to ask the team if they understand and agree to follow these ground rulses.

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    Chen-Yu Wang

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    As an Action Learning Coach, I would intervene:
    1. Ask the Team:Could we pause for a while?
    2. Smile and watch these two participants until they stop chatting.
    3. Ask the team:Are you curious about what they are talking about?
    4. Ask these two participants:Do you want to share anything with the team?
    5. Ask the team:Are we ready to start?

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    Michal Weyna

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    I would pause for a moment to observe if the two participants would notice it. If they did and somehow acknowledged their mistake (verbally or non-verbally) I would continue with my script. If they did not, I would ask the team: I noticed that we do not have a full attention here. Did you also notice it? Why is it important to have all team members fully attentive? How do we want to handle it?

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    Sophie Bryan

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    I would mention that there are several members of the group who have been in the ALS environment before, and ask them if they would like to share with the group what the ground rules are. I would also ask the group what behaviours would be important for the group to be effective. I would then continue with where I was in the introduction.

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    Sungyeon Cho

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    I would use SID intervention model in order to have the team notice what just happened and what could have impact on the team by themselves.
    I would ask the team as follows…
    ” What is happening now?”, “What will happen to the team if some of participants continue chatting during the session?”, and “How do we prevent this from happening again?”

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    marc rutter

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    As the coach I would pause and look to establish eye contact with the two talking participants. I would then engage them by asking them to share “why we use questions in Action Learning?” I then might ask them based on their experience “why we can only make statements in response to a question?” As they are now re-engaging I would continue with the ground rules.
    -Another approach might be to establish eye contact with them and ask them “if there something that is not clear in the instructions i am giving?” or I might ask “is there something they would like the whole group to hear so we can benefit from the learning.”
    -I would use it as an opportunity to underscore how the design of our norms is to focus on solving the problem at hand and we want everyone to experience being heard.

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    Jeff Feldman

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    I lean toward Michal’s approach above . . . pausing in my script for a moment and allowing the pause to speak the necessary message to the two members who are having a side conversation. I would look for some sign of understanding/acknowledgement from these two members of the group and if it’s clear that the point has been made, I would leave it at that. If I sensed that a stronger intervention was warranted, then I would take such an approach, doing so in a way that doesn’t shame the offenders, but creates the expectation of everyone staying focused and engaged and respectfully listening when others are speaking.

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    DrBea

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    Personally, i like the approach of acknowledging their expertise in terms of AL then asking them to share the rules and the importance of questions.

    Happy Coaching
    Bea

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    guangwei zhou

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    I would like to intervene and say” I noticed that two of our team members had been in many sessions. Would you like to share the ground rules with us MR X?”
    And then I will continue to say I also noticed that some of our members were chatting privately. What is the impact of doing this?
    After the team pointing out the impacts, I will ask what can we do better?

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