Scenario: Silent Observer

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

A member if the team decides they know the problem and the solution, so they will sit quietly until everyone else figures it out.

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

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Comments (5)

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    Craig Filipkowski

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    I would intervene by asking the group, “How do we feel about the balance of people asking the questions in this session so far?” Whether the answer is positive or negative, my follow up question would be, “What is the impact on the progress toward finding a solution when we have equal participation by all group members?” After listening to any answers, I would then ask, “Would anyone that hasn’t had a chance to ask a question like to contribute now?”

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    Marie Tseng

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    I would ask the team: “How does having a member of the team who decide to act in this manner makes you feel? “, Then “What is the impact on the team?”, “What do you want to do, as a team, to address this situation?” “Do you see this kind of behaviours in your organisations?”, “What is the impact?”, “what have you learnt from this session that you can apply back to your organisation?”

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    david tsipenyuk

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    I would call this behaviour out to the group in the following manner. I am observing that not every member of the group is contributing his/her ideas. What do we want to do about as a group? What is the impact on group performance and outcomes if not all members are contributing to find actions/solutions to support the problem presenter? How do we want resolve this as a group?

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    Elizabeth Rushton

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    I think I would ask ” are we fully leveraging the diversity of the group?”

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    Sumaia Thomas

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    As an Action Learning Coach I would lean in and pause the group by asking “How is the balance of participation? How are we doing exploring the problem from all angles? Why is it important? And how will we make it happen?”

    Another possibility could be a check in on the agreement of the group about the problem following the instructions of the AL Script – part 3 Subsequent Checkin – in order to check in if the group has a consensus on the problem to move forward to the solution phase.

    I believe both actions would help that member to realize its behavior was contraproducent and he would be stimulated to contribute more.

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