Scenario: Nay Sayer

As an action learning coach, how would you handle the following situation: All of the team members agree on the problem and a possible solution, but the problem owner insists it won’t work.  

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

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Comments (10)

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    Shirley Wang

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    I will post a question to the team:”How do you define the current situation? What’s the advantage and disadvantage for our proces and successful outcome for actions?”

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    Jonah Fabul

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    I will respect his/her opinion and ask this to the problem owner: What are the top 3 questions that you would like to ponder as a result of this session?

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    Chongli Tian

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    我会问团队你们认为现在团队遇到的问题是什么?以及应该如何看待这个问题?

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    Chongli Tian

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    通过以上提问,来引导团队自己认清现状,并为下一步要做什么做出认识上的准备。他们需要自己思考并在团队达成一致。同时也会适时提醒他们只有problem owner认可了方案,团队的任务才算完成。

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    Rosana Nucci

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    I would ask the problem owner: “What PART of this solution do you feel COULD work? What other solutions come to mind?” This would lead to the actions a bit more easily, making the problem owner accountable for the outcome of the process.

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    Eungkoo Kang

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    I will ask the problem owner, “what aspects of solution especially have you think it will not work?” “what do you think what aspects of solution made the team think it will work?” And I will ask the team, “what do you guys think of what will not work as a solution?” “what do you think we need to think more for a better solution if there is?

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    Song Chen

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    As a coach, I will post a question to team:”Why do you think this solution will solve this problem?”
    Then ask the problem owner: “Can the team’s opinion address your concerns?”
    If the answer is no.
    Then ask next problem owner:“Can you talk about your three concerns?”

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    Tom Dalderup

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    I would state the question for the problem-owner to give opportunity to express the doubts: What question would you like to ask the group about the solution?

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    wei xiao

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    Given the facts the different option on the solution between team member and the problem owner, I would value it as learning opportunities to the team as well. For such situation, I would ask the team:
    – “What is the problem your team are facing right now?”
    -“what’s the impact”
    -“What will you do ?”
    For the problem solving itself, I would ask the team,
    – “Why it happened?”
    – “How is the solution connecting to the problem identified”
    – “What will you do then?”

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    Emmanuel Ossom

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    The concern of the problem presenter that the proposed solution woldn’t work is an indication of his/her lack of understanding of how the solution would help address his/her real problem. It could also mean the problem presenter understands the solution but just doesn’t have any faith in it. This is an opportunity for me as the coach to ask both the problem presenter and the coach a number of questions: To the problem presenter: ” How do you see the solution not working for you?” What other solution would work for you? His response to the first question will reveal the problems he might have with the proposed solution and it will create an avenue for the team to ask themselves further questions that shed more light on how the solution will work. The problem presenter’s response to the second question would offer the chance for the team to compare the expected outcome of their solution with the new solution being proposed by the problem presenter. This comparison would allow the problem presenter to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the team’s proposed solution and his proposed solution. The problem presenter would accept the team’s proposed solution if he/she sees that his/her proposed solution has more weaknesses and therefore wouldn’t yield the expected results. On this basis, he would be convinced this time to accept the team’s proposed solution. If the comparison of both the two proposed solutions reveal more flaws in both of them, then it creates a nice opportunity to work out a new solution. If this wouldn’t be the case, but the team insists their first solution would work, then they have to convince the problem presenter that proposed solutions to any given real problem couldn’t be pre-determined whether they would work or not, unless implemented. On this note, the team can assure the problem presenter that their solution would certainly work and so he/she should exercise patience for the solution to be implemented and only pay them the remaining balance for their work done if the solution turns out to have worked successfully. If the problem presenter wouldn’t agree to this, then it could be an indication that the problem presenter has been been sincere with the presentation of his problem, thus some aspects of the problem statement are missing, hence he is afraid that the solution wouldn’t work, or probably the entire problem statement he presented was not representative of the situation on the ground.

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