Tools & Techniques

Increasing Relationship Productivity Using Intentional Language

There is no personal growth or success independent of generative relationships with others. Roles are meaningless without a network of people.


Tools & Techniques Introduction 3
Characteristic List 4
Intentional Language 6
Deep Listening 8
Questioning Questions 12
Generous Listening 16
Pulling and Pushing Questions 17
Manage People Issues: Listening or Solving 18
Summary Introduction
Isolated Listening: One-On-One
Group Solution: Gathering Together Conclusion
Roles and Responsibilities 41 Pie Chart 42
Accountability 43 OREO 44
Daily Guidelines
Assumptions About Relationships Definitions

Tools & Techniques Introduction

This chapter includes detailed descriptions of all the tools and techniques mentioned in the preceding chapters. Tool is used to label a specific skill. Technique is used to describe the process, which includes examples and dialogues to help in the understanding and application of each tool.

Where it is advantageous, the examples will include dialogues between two or more fictitious employees (Mark, Dave, Phil and Mary). In no way are these characters

representative of real clients. However, combined experiences of many clients will be used to animate these characters.

What Employees Need To

Behavior vs. Intentions

Projection Listening

Roles & Responsibility Pie Chart

Accountability OREO

Daily Guidelines

Technique Use Six Questions

Intentional Language

Neg. Characteristic List Question the Question

How Do You Want Me To Listen?

Push or Pull Questions Listen or Solve

Creating a Negative Characteristic List


Everyone has a list of positive and negative behavior characteristics. In this exercise we will focus on the negative for reasons that will become obvious.

Part 1. - Set-up

Divide an 8.5 xl 1 page into two columns - one 2" wide titled NAMES and one 6" wide titled NEGATIVE BEHAVIOR CHARACTERISTICS.

Part 2. - Names

A. In the Names column write in the first name of your parents, all siblings & relatives who were in your family of origin.
B. Continue by writing in the first names of your spouse(s) and children. Include other significant relationships such as ex-spouses, children from previous marriages, stepchildren and in-laws.

C. Next, starting from the your earliest memory in elementary school, write down the first name of friends, teachers, and other significant people in your life at that time. Do the same for Jr. high, high school, college, vocational school and grad schools you attended.

D. Now go through the jobs you have held. Include all bosses and a few peers, reports,

(^y clients and any other employees who you remember. Finish with 30 - 40 names on your list.

Part 3. - Behaviors

In the NEGATIVE BEHAVIOR CHARACTERISTICS column write in 3 to 5 examples of "acting out" or negative behavior that each of these people on the list exhibit when

they become tired, stressed, moody or angry. In other words, when their relationship model runs out or when their hardwiring kicks in and they go unconscious.

These behavioral descriptions are the set patterns that anyone, having spent enough time with the person on your list, would also observe the same behavior when they are under stress.

Part4. -TopTen

A. Now disregarding the NAMES list Circle ten (10) NEGATIVE BEHAVIORS

that stand out from the rest of the list as most negative to you. Behaviors you know will

push your buttons every time you see other people do these behaviors. You can choose similar words that mean the same thing, but not the same word no matter how many

times it appears on the list.
(^ B. Force a rank order. Next to the ten circled words place a number from 1 (high

reaction) to 10 (moderate reaction).

C. On a separate piece of paper, preferably a 3X5 card, re-write the rank ordered list 1- 10. Carry this list to one-on-one or group meetings with co-workers, have it near your

phone and when talking with family members.
Part 5. Using Your Top Ten Negative Behavior List

Results from this exercise:

1. You learned to expand your vocabulary of words that describe negative behavior in others.

2. You learned to identify a unique list of behaviors that, whenever others act them

out, create a reaction in you. Your Top Ten list
3. You learned that this list is very close to the behaviors you would least like others

to see in you.
What does this Top 10 list represent?

1. Your behavioral hot buttons. Negative behaviors that you are hypersensitive to when others act them out.

2. Behaviors that have negative, emotional charges associated with them.
3. Behaviors that did not work in your family's range of "normal." There may have

been punishment associated with these behaviors.
4. A list of behaviors that are outside what your family system deemed as acceptable


Why are we wired this way?

1. Because adapting to family behavioral norms is the default mode for all children to survive in family systems. Adapting to a wide range of functional or

dysfunctional environments (family beliefs & behaviors) assures continuation of life. It is a matter of survival.

2. What is not a part of the default survival mode is how to feel seen, understood, acceptable, chosen and valued from our families, friends, partners or co-workers.

Part 6. How to use the Top Ten list

1. This list of hypersensitive behaviors is stored in each person's psyche, hidden as it were, from conscious awareness. As with all aspects of the psyche, this list represents potential energy that builds up and then seeks release.

2. Being in relationship activates this release with people who are doing a specific behavior on your Top Ten list. We have an investment in

finding these people each day in order to release this energy. We marry them, hire and work for them.

3. Two people witnessing sadness, anger, loss, or gratitude in another

person may have completely different feelings. The feelings can be positive or negative.

To stay conscious of these behaviors, carry this list to one-on-one or group

meetings with co-workers, clients, venders, and bosses. Have it near your W phone when talking people who are difficult to communicate with, yet are

important people in your life

Continuum of Intentions

Core intentions are distinct from everyday or "good" intentions. Core intentions are unconditional. Core intentions are not open to interpretation and there are no exceptions.

Good intentions are conditional. Good intentions are open to the interpretation,

conditioning, experiences, opinions, beliefs, cultures or politics of those involved. There are always exceptions to good intentions.

The following is a spectrum of intentions, thought provoking but not comprehensive. Intentional language uses both these conditional and unconditional intentions to speak

directly to behavior and inject value into a conversation.

A. Conditional Good Intentions
1. These run along a continuum from unconscious intentions to verbalized hopes,

dreams & beliefs.

2. Unconscious Intentions - These are intentions below the level of consciousness (words that hurt, behaviors that insult and things we say but are not aware of the impact on other's feelings).

\^, 3. Evil Intentions- Inwardly focused, dark hardwiring that has been so wounded that feelings are only felt when others are in pain or experiencing a state of loss or

hopelessness (masochistic, psychopathic, sociopath, sadist behavior; without conscience).

Abusive Violent Malicious Lies Cheat Steal

4. White Lie Intentions - That intend no harm, but are not the true intention of the

person who uses them ("I will call you!" "We will get back to you!" "The check is in the mail!" and the whole range of sarcastic humor).


Forgetful Over Extend

Indulgence Short Attention

Small Picture Lack Purpose

5. Systemic Agreement Intentions - The agreements we have with people in

L^., general (to stop at stop signs; to give correct change; to give accurate directions; etc).

Be On Time
Do What You Say Moderation
Show Appreciation Reliable

6. Hopes, Dreams & Belief Intentions - These are hardwired hopes, dreams and beliefs we have regarding others. This includes our feelings concerning

marriages, partnerships and communities and how they will work out over time

("We will be married for ever!" "This car is a gem!" "Let's meet every week to talk!" "We all want our intentional community to last forever!" etc).

7. Well-meant intentions without real guarantees.

Regular Exercise Work Smarter

Lose Weight Communicate Better

Express Feelings Behave Differently

H^, Build Company Climb Mt. Everest

Eliminate Hunger

Help Humanity Big Picture

B. Unconditional Core Intentions
These are the feelings that we associate with being:

Seen, Understood,

Accepted, Chosen and

Valued through others language and behavior.

These feelings are present whenever another person has the skill to use Intentional

Language in conversation. This skill allows us to have the capacity to acknowledge and see around distractive behavior and then to speak directly to the person's Core Intentions.

Unconditional Core Intentions are at one end of the continuum and are the intentions that apply to all people, without exception. These intentions relate to a state of feeling whole, energetic and valued. When present, all is well in

i^ relationship, work and life. When absent, all life is a struggle.

The Range of Intentions
Conditional Good Verses Unconditional Core Intentions

Intentional Language:
• Is central to all of the tools described in this chapter. The OREO technique,

Generous Listening, Questioning Questions, Push or Pull Questions and Listen To

or Solve problem solving are examples.
• Is a way of addressing a person's behavior and at the same time speaks to a

person's intentions.
• Is a dramatic way to affect the way another people listen and behave, regardless

of our history with that person.
• Makes a person feel pulled into the conversation.

• Sets up and maintains an open environment to pursue a mutually beneficially outcome.

Core Intentional Language:
• Speaks to the desire of each of us to be seen, understood, accepted, chosen or

valued by others.
• Gives us the ability to seen, understood, accepted, chosen or valued others.

• Is rooted in early childhood conditioning which creates our model of how people

in our family are in conversation about relationship.
• When a person, or a whole organization, is not feeling seen, understood, accepted,

chosen or valued, Core Intentional Language is absent and relationships consume

excessive amounts of time and energy.
• We want this from business colleagues and personal relationships.

• It is our prime motivation for communicating.
• These five Core Intentions are unconditional as they are the same for everyone,

everywhere - with no exceptions!

On a personal note, I have heard many word substitutes for the five Core Intentions. It matters little if a different word is used, as long as the meaning is not lost in the new word's definition. The five Core Intentions have withstood the test of time, culture and preference.

We all have an intrinsic need to feel: • Seen

• Understood • Accepted
• Chosen
• Valued

Five Unconditional Core Intentions

Seen - Physically seen as well as an emotional feeling of "I exist!" A feeling that says I have been identified so I must exist. I feel Seen when I am called by name by another

"Hi Scott!"

Understood - A physical feeling left when I am asked multiple, detailed questions

about what I am talking about. I feel understood when I am not interrupted by the listener's personal views, beliefs or behaviors, but I'm asked more questions.

"Tell me the best part of your vacation Scott. What did you do, what did you see and would you go again."

Acceptable - A physical feeling of integrity & wholeness remaining after someone communicates that I am acceptable, as is - all of my positive & negative attitudes,

beliefs, appearance and the ways I express myself in general.

"I appreciate you just the way you are. I like the way you are open to learning new ways of being in partnership. I like the way you laugh at your own mistakes."

Chosen - A physical feeling of 'beginning to be filled up' after I have been selected, singled out or spoken of as unique.

"You were the first one we thought of when a need came up to fill this job position."

Valued - A physical feeling I have of 'always being full,' energetic & abundant with

productive energy. A fullness that does not diminish since its source - being seen, understood, accepted, chosen and valued from others - is known and available.

"Even though I lost the account, since the window of opportunity has passed, I still feel fulfilled because of all that I have learned and can use in the future."

Types of Listening Passive Listening

Imagine sitting silently, looking alternatively out the window and then at your boss as he speaks. You nod at appropriate times, but remain a passive listener. You have other concerns on your mind.

Your boss does not invite dialogue, solicit feedback, and ask for questions or any other interaction that would corroborate that what he is saying has been heard. He believes that his words alone will deliver results.

He will most likely drone on to the end of the meeting time without a single

recognition of those present. He feels his ideas were well received, since there were no questions, as he leaves the room for his next appointment.

Passive listening has a place at the opera, during a funeral or at story time at the local day care center's storytelling session. However, for the rest of our adult,

personal and work communications, "Generous Listening" is a better alternative. Generous Listening

The following "first person" statement defines what Generous Listening feels like:

"I feel listened to when asked:

• Specific questions about what I am talking about (not about what your

• Specific questions that help me clarify my words & meaning.

• Specific questions that remind me to slow down and deepen my thinking

about what I am saying.
• Specific questions that assist me in reaching a decision, or help me

understand and solve an issue in a new way."

Overall, I feel drawn into the conversation and compelled to respond to your questions when I feel you value my contribution.

Generous Listening is:
• A conversation that first identifies specific words or phrases that act as doorways

to a deeper clarity. Then, using those words or phrases, asks precise questions

that naturally pulls the speaker into a deeper conversation.
• A conversation that allows surface ideas to be shifted, by questioning key words

or phrases, towards the underlying cause or meaning. Then optional solutions to

resolve the problem can be decided upon.
• A conversation that asks questions, which leave the person being listened to, to

feel seen, understood, accepted, chosen and valued.

The Generous Listener accomplishes this by interrupting the person's train of thought and

asking questions about phrases or words that cause the speaker to pause and reflex on what they are saying.

For example, Dave, an employee, says, " I am really having trouble with the

purchasing group. Every time I hand in a requisition for supplies or equipment, they give me the third degree, and ..."

Mark, the Deep Listener and Dave's boss, interrupts and says,
"I understand your upset, however let me ask you a few clarifying questions.

First, has this problem really occurred every time or just recently since the

{^/ company has tightened its belt?" Dave responds that it has just been since the belt tightening.

Mark asks, "Dave, it would be helpful to know who the "they" are. Is it one person or the whole purchasing group?" Dave says it is specifically two people.

Mark pulls Dave further into the conversation by saying," I believe you are just

trying to get the supplies necessary for your group to do their work. So, tell me a little about this term you used, 'the third degree', that you felt these two people

subjected you to.

Dave says, "I felt very little trust or respect coming from them. I felt like I was

presumed a subversive and a cheat before I was asked what I needed. They acted like they worked for some other company."

This "interruption" caused Dave to move away from his hardwired track and enter the realm of specific detail. By continuing this line of questioning, rather than

reacting to Dave's first thoughts, Mark is able to retrieve details hidden beneath Dave's reactions.

Mark says, "I have felt this way at times in my career. Most often when the

company I was working for was struggling to survive the times. Much like now, because of the economy, our resources are lean and controlled.

[^m/ stress of the

Dave, can you understand that the purchasing people may be also feeling the

belt tightening? Can you put your self in their shoes? The question I would like you to consider is, what do you think is missing for the purchasing

folks? Under the current stress of having to say no to everyone, what is missing for the two people you mentioned?"

Dave responds, " Your right. I did not put my self in their shoes, nor did I consider I was just one of many employees asking them to approve my

requisition. As far as what they are missing, it is probably similar to what I felt with a lack of trust or respect.

Mark interrupts again to shorten the conversation by saying, "Does it make sense to use the OREO* technique to include value statements that would open them to the conversation? Why don't you try this skill we learned and see them melt before your eyes."

Dave agrees to go back, try again, and then report back to Mark on his success with getting what he needs from Purchasing.

Dave felt justified in being upset with Purchasing. After all, their job was to get him what his group needed to work efficiently. Mark helped Dave transition from a hardwired position, to a position of being empathic with co-workers during cutbacks in staff and funds. From the co-worker or partner position, everyone's

s^z Core Intentions are a part of all conversations.

As illustrated in the above conversation, Mark used Deep Listening to give Dave a feeling of a value as he tried to resolve his problem. Mark asked key questions to deepen the conversation and pull Dave into the conversation. He interrupts Dave at the appropriate moment and began to guide the conversation towards partnership with the two people in Purchasing.

OREO technique - Go to page 37 in this chapter.

Generous Listening Introduction

In the past, because of time pressures, Mark used to give quick answers to Dave's

questions. Rather than probing for what was behind Dave's query, which would allow deeper reflection and new perspectives on his current issue, Mark went for the most

expedient solution, so he could get on to his next meeting or task. Work pressures drove his conversation style and Mark's lack of relationship skills perpetuated the need for

future meetings to clarify the hasty answers given to Dave and others.

On Dave's part, when he did ask for time with Mark, to clarify priorities or to get feedback on a project, he felt rushed by Mark and shortchanged. Dave unconsciously tried to extend the time he had with Mark by including numerous details that he felt were

necessary to explain his position. The effect of this was to force Mark to truncate the conversation with a quick solution. The result of this quick answer was that Dave had to

repeatedly return to Mark with portions of the same problem. A problem that had not been explored deeply enough to be resolved the first time. A "relationship dance" took

place using valuable time going over the same facts several times.

Mark now employees "Generous Listening" and "Questioning Questions" skills to get to the root of Dave's problem fast, saving both of them a great deal of time and frustration. Instead of wasting time with multiple meeting, Mark can use Questioning Questions to:

• Transfer QQ skills to employees,
• Have time to show interest & concern for their problems & ideas, and
• Delegate when appropriate; allowing employees to trust themselves and solve

their own issues.


Questioning Questions Technique

Questioning Questions allows Mark's conversation to quickly get to the root of the Dave's real need. With a little practice, most employees recapture hours of time that

were spent in well-meaning conversations that seldom delivered the results desired.

Below is a graphic that represents Dave asking Mark a question. Dave goes on for a sentence or two when Mark interrupts and asks a question (Ql). Dave answers the

question, narrowing down the breath of his concerns, with the effect of bypassing

unnecessary details. Mark continues to interrupt by asking questions as needed (Q2-Q4) to allow Dave to think on his feet. At some point, with clarifying questions and

reflection, Dave has his answer and is able to articulate what he really needs from Mark.

Question from Dave

Mark interrupts by asking a series of questions about key

/ words or phrases. This

^triggers reflection & response from Dave and deepens the

conversation. Mark continues

interrupting by asking

questions about key words or

phrases until a viable solution

emerges. The majority of

questions, if questioned, will lead to a clear answer buried

under mental or emotional details.

When Dave is not asked

questions, he will include details that are unnecessary, because he

will not be able to keep Mark's attention.

Conversation ends with Dave feeling

heard, has solved his

problem and

completed this in record time, thus

leaving out details that were not

necessary for the best solution.

Questioning Questions Examples: Condensing Conversations

When a question is first asked or a conversation is in process, listen carefully for a key word or phrase (generous listening) that begs to have a questioned asked in return. That

question, if the right question, will cause the speaker to go down and reflect at a deeper level of detail, and then clarify what they were trying to say.

Dave asks a question, "Mark, is it possible for my group to get a budget increase this

quarter? My experience has been that even the act of asking can have a detrimental effect on following quarters. Is that true?"

Mark Giving a Normal Reaction: "Yeh, I have never had any luck mid-quarter. What do

you need it for?" (Dave would then go into more details, even though he has been told it is impossible).

Key Words: possible, experience, budget increase & detrimental effect Mark Questioning Key Words:

1) "My experience is that there is always money available - if justified! I would be interested in your experience of what you feel is possible in mid-quarter as it relates to

budget increases?" (Dave is given the opportunity, invited into the conversation, to reflect and put into words what lies beneath his question).

2) "It would also be valuable to me to understand what kind of increase your thinking of for this quarter, and for what purpose? Tell me about this."

3) "What do you think the detrimental effects would be?"

Ot Listening for key words goes both ways. If Dave were consciously listening to Mark's

comments, he would notice Mark used the key word justified. Asking Mark for detailed clarification of what he believes justifies getting a budget increase would increase his chances greatly.

An important point here is that key words and phrases riddle all conversations. What makes key words and phrases difficult to hear is our hardwired mind-set, emotional

^, expectations, and reactions to other's hardwired behavior? In other words, hardwiring

keeps most people semi-unconscious when engaged in risky conversations with others. Thus we do not hear key words as portals into a deeper conversation.


As a reader of this chapter, you will have had many moments where you asked yourself, "How is he using that word - What does he means by semi-conscious? Who is Mark? I don't understand how this relates to his earlier point!" These are "awakenings" to something missing, unclear or lacking in the author's explanations and examples. If we were in a conversation, these would be key words or phrases which could be used to get clarity.

If these "awakenings to something missing" are formed into questions for clarification, the tool of Questioning Questions has arises naturally. We all do this to some extent in conversations at home and work. The trick is to awaken during conversations that pose some risk or consequence with significant people and not to continue in a semi-conscious mode. To be truly engaged, it is important to listen to every word attentively and ask for clarification when the "something's missing" feeling prompts us to interrupt the conversation and ask a question.

Successful Listening - "How would you like me to listen to you!"

We are often unsuccessful in conversations because we assume we know how the other

person wants us to engage them. We become perplexed and frustrated when our well-

meaning silence, questions, criticisms or personal antidotes upset the person. Our intentions were good, but somehow our behavior has upset them. In the case of listening, few have had the advantage of a parent or mentor with skills to set up a conversation for success.

Successful Listening is about setting up a conversation that allows the other person to feel that we want to be in dialogue with them. To be successful we need to ask questions that

clarify how they would like us to behave during and at he end of the conversation. In other words, how they would like us to listen and respond. The method of listening is

frequently determined by the mood of the person and the subject being discussed. Like any tool or technique, it can be over used or misused. Here is a guideline:

When a person is very emotional, it is a good idea to ask before the conversation begins, "How would you like me to listen to you!"

When in a conversation that starts cordial and soon become challenging, it would be a good idea to interrupt and ask the same question.

Successful Listening Exercise

\^/ First, start off by asking, "How would you like me to listen to you!"

Second, give the person two or more of the following options:

• "Would you like me interrupt and ask questions as you talk?"
• "Would you like me to interrupt and tell you my experience & give

suggestions as you talk?"
• "Would you like me to be silent and respond when you indicate your ready?"

• "Would you like me to hold my questions or comments until the end?"
• "Would you like to just talk, and then end the conversation without a response

from me?"


Pulling or Pushing Questions

Pulling Questions:

• Can interrupt by asking a question that deepens the employee's conversation. • Invite the speaker to stay in the conversation by referring to the speaker's

behavior and core intentions (value).
• Maintain the conversation's behavior/intention balance through intentional

• Give the speaker a feeling that we want them to continue, but at a deeper, more

thoughtful level.

Pushing Questions:

• Can interrupt by asking a question that stops the employee's conversation.
• Push the speaker out the conversation by only referring to what or to the way

something was said, completely ignoring the speaker's core intentions (value). • Disrupt the conversation's behavior/intention balance by focusing on content or

• Give the speaker a feeling that we do not want them to continue.

• Can make the employee feel defensive, misunderstood or under valued. • Leave the employee with a sense of being wrong that is hard to pinpoint

Listen or Solve - Managing Problems in One-quarter Time

Prerequisite Tools & Techniques: • Intentional Language

• Generous Listening
• Question Questions
• Pushing and Pulling Questions


Few business issues consume a leader's time and intelligence more than altercations caused by the break down of interpersonal communications among employees.

Differences in employee's experience, personality, culture, position, age and education make judgment difficult. These combined with a general mistrust of diversity and change, make the process of resolving communication breakdowns disconcerting and uncomfortable for leaders.

Adding to the diversity of people in the work place, someone made a compelling point when they lamented that, "80 percent of life is maintenance." Relationship maintenance

\i^ at work alone, such as travel, staying on task, interruptions, crises, attendance at

meetings, managing e-mail and reacting to other non-work related problems, can take a chunk out of employees time. These time consuming issues often make it hard to focus

on the crucial priorities that positively shape the bottom line.

However, the majority of the 80 percent of maintenance is a diversion from or attempt to protect our selves from relationships that have become challenging. Dysfunctional relationship maintenance involves such activities as attending meetings where your presence is not essential; listening to points of view that make no business sense, or the handling of people problems that should be resolved by highly paid reports.

Indicators of Failing Communication Models that signals the need for intervention:

• Inappropriate communications under stress • Unsuccessful or delays in hiring new staff
• Doing tasks, rather than delegating to others • Ineffective meeting leadership

• Excessive absenteeism or tardiness • Inability to complete assignments

• Uncooperative with others
• Indecisive when clarity is essential

These behavioral indicators, signals if you will, suggest that some missing communication skill is lacking in the person's inter-relationship model. These

inappropriate behaviors leave the person with feelings ranging from embarrassment to righteous indignation.

Whether justified or not, the outcome of the dysfunctional communication & resulting residue was not what the person intended. These communications also falls short of common professional standards of behavior. More than any time in modern history, business success is centered on a higher level of required skills for business relationships and communications.

Forces that Compound Communication Dysfunction

Conflicting communications, radically different personalities (hardwiring), a variety of work and political styles all put a strain on leader's when managing employee's difficult

behavior. Even with the best of intentions managers soon become frustrated with the amount of time consumed when forced to handle people issues rather than work related


Leaders most troublesome blind spot, when mediating conflict, is the assumption that

employees know how to solve their interpersonal disputes. So many employees are sent right back into the fray to solve the problem on their own. This borders on insanity -

sending employees back to do the same thing that did not work the first, second or third time!

What is needed is a relationship/communication model that sends employees back to difficult relationship problems with new skills that will remedy the following:

• Misunderstandings - The endless re-hashing of different points of view;
• Gossip & Backbiting - The spreading of irrelevant information about other

people's behavior or ideas throughout the organization;
• Chronic Triage - The attempt to categorize & resolve recurrent, shifting issues

without success; and
• Waste - The time, resources and productivity wasted by a lack of effective

relationship skills.
Two Choices: Listen or Solve

When employees request time to meet, we can either Listen to their requests, complaints,

suggestions, or we can help them Solve their issues. Distinguishing between the processes of Listening and Solving can reduce to one quarter the time normally used to help employees resolve personal and professional issues.

Combined with the "Questioning Questions" tool, the "Listen or Solve" technique will dramatically alter the way leaders manage employee issues.

Common Sense
The truth about solving issues can be stated so:

If an employee knew how to solve their request, complaint or suggestion successfully, they would not have asked you for time to talk about it.

The very fact that a problem remains unresolved, or that an employee is requesting time from the boss, says something is missing. What is most often missing is appropriate

language and new skill that will move a struggling relationship out of an impasse to resolution. Relationships between employees can be bogged down by personal style,

attitudes, behaviors or personalities. "Bogged down" means the use of default L^ (hardwired) communication behavior repeatedly with unsatisfactory results.

Case Study

As an illustration, the following represents the kind of no-help response employees might get from their managers:

Dave (employee) says to Mark (his manager), "Can I have a few minutes?"

"Sure Dave. What's up?"

Dave elaborates, "I'm having difficulties getting cooperation from Mary (co worker). She does not seem to care that we have a schedule to meet and we

depend on her delivery to be ready for the tape out this September. I have tried getting her to commit to a plan, but she just shrugs her shoulders and says her group is swamped. My people are becoming increasingly frustrated at Mary's group and at me. What do you suggest?"

"Dave" Mark responds, "I need you to get together with Mary as soon as possible and work this out. You must know how important the tape out is to the company. The Board and the executive committee are both putting all our success on Mary and you working together. Have I made myself clear!"

\^ Dave gets up to leave and says on his way out, "I'll work it out Mark."

Mark says, just as Dave opens the door, "Get back to me if you need more support. We are counting on you."

This case study stresses two points.
First: Mark's interpersonal relationship model is limited, i.e., specifically his conflict model. Flat out, Mark does not know how to help Dave solve his communication issue with Mary. He is following the relationship model he was taught. His solution is to send Dave right back to Mary for the two of them to figure it out. After all, they are adults and are being well compensated to figure out problems.

This is not a technical or scheduling problem, but rather a misaligned relationship issue. Therefore, if Mark knew what to do, he would arrange to bring both

employees into his office and facilitate a meeting immediately. The meeting would acknowledge Dave & Mary's common business intention to successfully

meet the tape out date. Second, he would find out what is missing in Dave &

Mary's relationship in order for them to work successfully together. We will explain this method below.

Second: Dave & Mary's relationship will deteriorate. Because Mark has not i%m/ nipped the problem in the bud, Dave will go back, react in the same way with

Mary and get nowhere. Mary and Dave's hardwired behaviors will be repeated

(, over & over again, continuously sapping time and productivity from their people as the tape out deadline nears. Mark will increasingly become frustrated privately

and publicly with both managers. The morale of all employees will possibly reach all time lows.

Listen or Solve: The Language and Skills That Transform Behavior

We will now define and explain the differences and similarities between Listen and Solve. Both processes are valuable and can have positive results.

The Listen Process:

• Allows each employee to be mentored by giving them solutions and thus the

opportunity to resolve problems on his or her own.
• Keeps the conversation confidential, in play and eliminates spurious banter

around the workplace from disrupting productivity.
• Never allows the same story to be told twice, but begins each meeting with

something like, "What have you tried in order to solve the issue since we last met?"

The Solve Process:

• Requires all involved parties to meet eye-to-eye and, with boss facilitation, to help

in solving their problem.
• Allows problems to be resolved in real time.

• Eliminates hearing multiple versions of the same.
• Helps the group come to solution in one-quarter of the time.

As a manager, when someone requests time to talk, Mark is presented with an

opportunity to give Dave or Mary a chance to be heard and an opportunity to learn. To accomplish this Mark asks if they want him to:

1) Listen (listen, ask questions & give advise) or

2) 2) Do they want him to help them Solve (gather, discuss & resolve) the problem in real-time. Remember, listening is just as important as solving. Both are

essential in building trust, loyalty and developing employees.

Allows the group to be mentored and thus provides an opportunity to settle

problems as a group while at the same time learning skills.
Tests new language and skills in real time to keep the conversation focused on

intentions and behavior as separate units.

Begins each follow up meeting with something like, "Let's discuss what has transpired since our last meeting by explaining what worked and what did not."


Below we will discuss the two processes and the agreements that govern each process. In order for Mark to recapture time normally used on interpersonal issues, it is important for him to set clear boundaries around each process and to be consistent with all employees.

Isolated Listening - One-On-One

If an employee wants us to Listen, the conversation will remain confidential and not be discussed outside the office.


Process Awareness - Before Mark begins, he needs to be either confident his

employee already knows the Listen or Solve process, or he will explain the rules at the start.

Confidentiality - When Mark agree to Listen, he agrees not to talk about the meetings content to any one outside of the conversation: not to the Mary or group

they are having difficulty with, not with his own boss, not with his peers or other

employees. No one! Mark is not to go out and try to solve the problem, even if it would seemingly take less time.

It is very important for Mark to keep this confidentiality for two reasons. First, to allow Dave the opportunity to learn how to resolve his own relationship issues.

Second, it prevents the spread of emotional disinformation in the organization, the undermining of productivity and the creating of unnecessary chasms between people or groups. Mark, as a boss, needs to keep it to himself.

Types of Listening: Isolated Listening vs. Situational Questioning

The first question should be, "How would you like me to listen to you!" We ask this to be successful in the conversation. There are many variations. Use them creatively.

• "Would you like me to ask questions as you are talking?"
• "Would you like me to be silent and respond when your ready?"

• "Would you like me to tell you my experience and suggestions as we go along?" • "Would you like to finish talking, and then end the conversation without a

response from me?"
Isolated listening is the opposite of situational questioning.

TIME SAVER: Isolated listening is the process of Mark talking to one employee,

keeping the conversation confidential, suggesting solutions for Dave to try to resolve the (^, problem and being available for follow up.

L, TIME WASTER: Situational questioning is the process of listening to one employee, then seeking out others who are implicated, and asking questions about their versions of

the same problem. Then advice is giving to each person separately to have him or her resolve the problem independently.

Behavior vs. Intentions - Mark uses intentional language to balance out the natural

tendency for Dave to be defensives when he focuses on Mary's behavior. Intentional

language speaks to both Mary's behavior that may be frustrating and to the common intentions she shares with Dave.

As a facilitator, be vigilant in keeping the language used by the employee balanced. Intentions will often become buried under agitated behavior. We need to listen for and make suggestions when we hear descriptions of behavior that do not include references to intention. This does not imply balancing every sentence! Staying conscious of and maintaining the tone of the developing conversation. Keeping the conversation balanced will keep everyone engaged and feeling valued.

Pulling vs. Pushing Questions - Mark uses pulling questions to keep the conversation in

play and inviting. Pushing questions take the conversation out of play, feel confronting and leave participants with residue.

Pulling questions keep the speaker in the conversation by referring to the speaker's value

\^/ and intentions. Pulling questions maintain the conversation's behavior/intention balance, allows for the redirecting of the conversational flow and gives the speaker a feeling that we want them to continue, but at a deeper level.

Pushing questions make the employee defensive and eventually push him or her out of the conversation. Furthermore, a pushing question give the employee a sense of being

wrong and leaves them feeling misunderstood.

No Repeating - Mark reminds Dave not to return and talk about the same problem a second time. If Dave begins to rehash the same details, Mark simply interrupts him,

reminds Dave of the rules and ask what he has done to resolve the issue since the last

meeting. In addition, the option to Solve the issue is always available as a next step for Dave.

Open to Future Solution - As long as Dave keeps trying to resolve the problem in new ways, Mark is open to future "Listening" conversations.

Generous Listening - To deepen a conversation Mark asks questions. Mark does this by

listening for key words or phrases and then asks questions for clarification. These specific questions help deepen the conversation and get to the root of the issue, saving everyone time. (See "Generous Listening" in Part VII Tools & Techniques)

Questioning Questions - This is similar to Generous Listening in that it deepens the

(, conversation by helping Mark probe for the real reason the question is asked in the first

place. This is accomplished by Mark not answering the question, but by keeping Dave's conversation focused on the issue by asking a question about his question. Questioning

Questions allow Mark to quickly evaluate what is truly behind employee's attitudes, words, arguments, politics, ultimatums, personalities and beliefs. (See "Questioning Questions" in Part VII Tools & Techniques)

The dangers of answering rather than asking questions are: • Mark reacts rather than responds;

• Mark does not understand the root of the question;
• Misunderstanding what Dave is really asking increases exponentially; • Dave ceases thinking for himself; and
• Dave receives no training to build creative problem solving skills.

Action Items - Mark gives Dave advice about options that he can take back into the work

place to resolve the problem with Mary. Dave's accomplishing these options is used as the only focus of further discussions.

Isolated Listen Example:

v^, As a manager, one of Marks responsibilities is to be available to listen to employees needs. The danger is that without using a practice such as Isolated Listening, Mark could

waste inordinate amounts of time hearing about the same problem several times. Isolated

Listening involves new skills in language and process to reduce time spent in meetings. Mark will do this by:

Answering Dave's question with a question, based on a key word or phrase. This provides the language skill to deepen the conversation quickly.
Setting up rules for engagement and confidentiality, are process skills.

As an example of answering a question with a question, we will refer once again to the conversation that involved Mark and Dave. Dave is having trouble getting a peer, Mary, to commit to a tape out date. All of the examples below assume that Mark has already

explained the process of Listen or Solve as choices. Dave says to Mark, "Can I have a few minutes?"

"Sure Dave" Mark replies. "However, before we start, do you want me to simply Listen or do you want my help in solving the problem now?"

Dave says thoughtfully, "I think just talking it through will help."

"Remember," Mark reminds Dave, "You can always escalate our conversation to a L, process of solving at any time. We just have to gather the right people."

"I understand." Then Dave elaborates, "I'm having difficulties getting cooperation from

Mary. He does not seem to care that we have a schedule to meet. My team depends on his on-time delivery. My team must be ready for tape out this September. I have tried

getting him to commit to a plan, but he just shrugs his shoulders and says his group is

swamped. My people are becoming increasingly frustrated at Mary, his group and at me. What do you suggest?"

"Dave" Mark responds, "We all know how important the tape out is to the company.

Right off, we will assume that Mary's, yours and my intentions to be successful are the same. So, let me ask you a few questions:

• Did the two of you complete the scenario planning at the beginning of the project

to account for various unknowns that might occur as the schedule moves forward? • What is the agreement you have with Mary on how you will work together when

there is a delay in the schedule?
• What behavior is Mary acting out that frustrates you?

• Can you see that behavior in yourself?
• Are you projecting on Mary because your model of relationship has run out? • Are you stuck in being right, but less than productive?
• If Mary were in this room with us, what would her response be?"

H^, As Dave responds to Mark's questions, he reflects on what the real problem is: Mary and his relationship is misaligned. Dave is reminded that he cannot rely on getting

cooperation from others by being right, by pointing to a schedule and ranting about what the other person is doing or not doing. He must rely on his skills to keep the conversation

in play by verbally placing value on everyone's contribution, and at the same time, continuing to ask others what is missing for them to be successful.

Mark says, "Dave, I know this feels awkward, but hang in there. Now would be a good time to come up with a few action items to make the situation more productive."

Dave thinks of three ideas right away. "I will invite Mary to lunch and re-establish our

original intentions at the beginning of the project. I will also tell Mary what is missing for me and ask the same about her. Second, we will bring both teams together and

express our mutual intentions to help each other. We will also reevaluate the timeline without projecting or finding fault with either group. Third, I will ask Mary to help me

select two senior people from each group to be a steering committee to drive the process to completion. This should be a good start.

Mark says, " This is a good start. It is my hope that you will reflect on what Mary has to

say and then ask questions that deepen her understanding of what is missing at this point in the project. Hold back your opinions until you really understand where she is coming

from. Your goal in asking questions is to allow Mary to come up with a solution that ni^, solves the scheduling issue."

Dave gets up to leave and says on his way out, "I'll work it out Mark. You've reminded me of how to successfully approach Mary to get her cooperation. We will get back to

you with our progress."
Mark says, just as Dave opens the door, "I look forward to it."

In this conversation, Mark helps Dave by supporting action items that can be carried out with Mary. Mark can now monitor Dave's progress to see if further intervention will be necessary. This is not a passive process, but one that provides options to Dave that he may not have thought of before. Dave is being offered an opportunity to learn to solve interpersonal issues on his own.

Given the rules for Listening, Mark will not discuss Dave's conversation with anyone else. However, he will follow-up with Dave on a regular basis to assure that momentum is sustained and the schedule is kept on track.

Solve - Gathering the Key People


Gather - Mark will have Dave gather all involved parties together in the same room before hearing details.

Issues affecting relationships, schedules, roles, responsibilities and accountability only need to be expressed one time, to the group as a whole. This literality means we do not

request or listen to problem details with an individual until everyone in the same room.

Intuitively we may feel this is backwards. However, by adhering to this rule alone the time saved and bottom line results are beyond expectations. If we develop the skills to

ask deep questions, use questioning-questions to deepen the conversation, then the details only need to be explained once.

Process Awareness - Before Mark begins, he need to be confident the group already knows the rules for Listen or Solve, or he need to explain the rules to the group.

Confidentiality - The participants will not talk to anyone outside the group about the conversation, and only then when everyone is present, unless agreed upon by the members. The group agrees to avoid unscheduled, spontaneous side meetings where

people are talked about others, decisions are made, or blame is verbalized without representation.

The danger of not enforcing confidentiality is in spreading misinformation when

speaking out of the context of all members present. We want facts presented when everyone can help clarify details, not personal interpretations or projections. It is good practice to begin meetings and end meetings with everyone aligning with this rule.

If someone does initiate an off-line conversation about the issue, request that they hold off and bring it up when the other individual or the whole group is present.

Behavior vs. Intentions - Mark will make sure intentional language is used during the

meeting. Intentional language speaks to either a person or a group's unproductive behaviors, and at the same time speaks to the common intentions of the person or group.

The role of the facilitator, Mark, is to preserve the balance and integrity of the conversation. As facilitator he needs to be vigilant in keeping the language used by all

participants balanced.

Mark needs to listen for and make suggestions when he hears descriptions of behavior that do not include references to intentions. This does not imply balancing every

sentence! Keeping the general tone of the ongoing conversation balanced will keeping everyone involved.

Pulling vs. Pushing Questions - Pulling questions keep the conversation in play and the L , feeling inviting. Pushing questions take the conversation out of play and feel


Pulling questions keep the speaker in the conversation by referring to the speaker's intentions. Pulling questions help to maintain the behavior/intention balance, can be used

to redirect the conversational flow and give employees the feeling we want them to continue, but at a deeper level.

Pushing questions interrupt, make the speaker defensive and eventually push the speaker out of the conversation. Furthermore, pushing questions give the speaker the feeling of

being wrong and leaves the speaker feeling misunderstood.

Next Step Action Items - Lastly, Mark will help each person come up with "next step" action items that will resolve or move the problem of the employees towards resolution.

Examples of Solving

As a manager, one of Mark's main responsibilities is to help employees Solve problems. The danger is that without relationship skills, such as Listen or Solve, the hardwired

based solving process wastes inordinate amounts of time. Some examples:

• Listening to people's endless, irrelevant details,

n^ • Listening to complaints without hearing real solutions, and
• Personally being frustrated by employees who "bug" others with negative


New relationship models involve skills in Solving through the use of language and

process. For example, answering a question with a deepening question is a language skill that keeps a conversation in play. Setting up the rules for relationship is a process skill.

Lets look at both of these.

Solving - Questioning with a Question

As an example of answering a question with a question, we will refer to the conversation that involved Mark as manager and Dave as employee. Dave is having trouble getting a

peer, Mary, to commit to a schedule.

Assumptions for Examples: In all of the examples below Mark has explained the

process of Listen or Solve as choices and the group gathered understands the proposal that people are not best understood by their behavior, but by their intentions.

Dave says to Mark, "Can I have a few minutes?"

"Sure Dave" Mark replies. "However, before we start, do you want me to simply Listen v^, or do you want my help Solve the problem now?"


Dave says thoughtfully, "I think it is time to Solve this issue."

Mark responds, "Then let's get Mary, and anyone else you two feel should be here, in the same room and have a conversation. I will facilitate. See if two o'clock will work for

Mary and we will meet in the conference room?"
At Two O'clock, Dave and Mary come into the conference room.

Mark starts by saying, " Thanks Mary for joining us. I want to start by restating my position. Both of you bring benefit to the company. This conversation assumes

everyone's intentions are focused on doing what is best for the business. Therefore, we are not bringing into question either of your intentions or value to the company or to me,

is that clear!"
Dave and Mary nod their agreement.

"Based on Dave's desire to solve a problem, I'm assuming there may be some

misalignment in your relationship. As we have learned, the majority of communication issues involve misaligned relationships, while at the same time people's common

intentions towards the business remain stable. Therefore, lets start with what you are

assuming about each other and then what is missing for each of you to get the job done on time?"

Mark nods at Dave and says, "Dave, what assumptions have you made about Mary

carrying out his job and what behaviors have you observed in Mary to support your

judgments?" In addition," Mark looks at Mary, "Mary, I would like you to take notes on what Dave says about behaviors he has observed."

Using this example, stay aware of how Mark asks questions (highlighted in black) to quickly deepen the conversation as each person speaks. Also, notice that Mark
efficiently shortens the conversation by interrupting Dave and Mary's conversation by asking a question. Hearing all of the details is less effective than listening for the word or phrase that, when questioned, will allow the conversation to deepen and uncover the underlying problem. (Details for both of these tools can be found in the sections "Deep Listening" and "Questioning Questions" in Part VII Tools & Techniques.)

Asking a Question: Picking the Right Word or Phrase

Dave begins by saying, "When I've recently approached Mary, she seemed to be annoyed by my questions and ..."

Mark interrupts, "Let me ask a question Dave. I would be interested in how you are using the word annoyed. What are other words that could be used for annoyed?"

(In most situations, Dave would be allowed to go on to explain a detailed list of Mary's

(L, behaviors. If this happens, Mark has already ceased listening and has slid unconsciously into self- reflection. It takes time to become proficient and stay conscious in real-time

conversations. A good practice is to listen for the first word or phrase that describes a behavior - in this case "annoyed." Next, ask the speaker to further define the word or

phrase, "What are similar words to describe this behavior?")

"Well," Dave states, "Mary seems preoccupied, angry or frustrated with me asking questions about the schedule."

"So, it is Mary's preoccupied, angry or frustrated behavior that has your attention? Is that right?"

(Mark gets right to the point; it is a behavior focused problem rather than an intention problem. This reflection deepens the conversation one more level.)

"Well, yes" Dave replies.

Mark points to Mary and asks Dave, "Let me interrupt you again Dave and ask Mary a

question. Mary, are you preoccupied, angry, frustrated or annoyed with Dave personally, with Dave's schedule questions or with your own work situation?"

(Within 30 seconds of the conversation starting, Mark turns Dave's attention to Mary and ^^ asks Mary the question that is really bothering Dave - Are you annoyed with Me

personally, with My schedule questions or with Your own work? The important piece here is giving Mary several options to clarify his possibly annoyance. This helps Mary

not feel attacked or cornered, and allows him to reflect on his real feelings across the board.)

Mary reflects for a moment and says, "Since you worded it that way, I will respond by

saying I am not personally annoyed with Dave. I have a lot of respect for what he does. Am I annoyed recently by the way he asks his questions? Lately it seems like he wants to

argue, so I just back off. Lastly, am I annoyed with work? I would say it goes with the territory and the times. There is a lot of pressure on us for getting the work done. My people are not slackers. They know the tape out is coming. Lastly, sometimes Dave's questions feel inappropriate and condescending."

"Thanks Mary," replies Mark. "Dave what have you heard in Mary's words?"

Note that Mark does not interrupt Mary. He sees the importance in letting Dave hear the responses to all three options.

Dave responds, "From what Mary says, I realize I have been focused on Mary's behavior instead of her intentions. I have been caught up in my own fear of failure. I know

Mary's intentions are the same as mine, but I failed to include them in my thinking or in \^, any conversation we had. I was only asking questions about schedules. I never asked

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Q the Q Summary - Time To Resolution

In the following timetable, we will look at the time savings as a result of using Deep

Listening and Questioning Questions in the Solve process. With out feeling interrupted or blamed, the employee is pulled into the conversation and helped to "language" their

problem and act on suggestions for resolving the issue.

10 seconds into the initial conversation:
Mark clarifies whether Dave wants a Listen or Solve conversation. Since this time it is

Solve, he asks Dave to gather the appropriate people at a specific time. Mark does not ask for details from Dave.

Later, Mark sets the stage for the Solve conversation when Mary and Dave are present. He wants everyone to assume good intentions so that they can focus on behavior without

taking comments personally. He then asks Dave a question.

10 seconds into Dave's replies:
Mark interrupts Dave in mid sentence. He asks Dave a series of questions based on a "loaded" word used in his first sentence - annoyed. From Dave's point of view, Mary seemed annoyed when he questioned the schedule.
Mark then asks Dave to give several other words that are like annoyed. He does this to help Dave bring his unspoken feelings to surface regarding Mary's behavior. Dave

(^ comes up with preoccupied, angry and frustrated for three additional ways to describe Mary's behavior.

2 minutes into the Solve conversation:
Mark flips the conversation away from Dave by directly asking Mary to clarify whether

she was upset with Dave, Dave's behavior, or herself. Carefully phrasing the question to direct Mary's self-reflection, and then pull her into the conversation, Mark says, "Mary, are you preoccupied, angry, frustrated or annoyed with Dave personally, with Dave's schedule questions or with your own work?" Mary's multiple answers allow Dave to reflect on a solution, rather than on reacting personally or defensively.

5 minutes into the Solve conversation:
Mark allows Mary to complete her answers and is prepared to ask questions if necessary. Mark then turns the conversation to Dave for his clarification of what he has heard Mary say in response to multiple behavioral descriptions.

It should have become obvious at this point that asking Mary a question that requires

multiple answers is important in resolving emotionally charged issues (i.e., "Mary, are you preoccupied, angry, frustrated or annoyed with Dave personally, with Dave's

schedule questions or with your own work?"). Questions and answers with multiple

responses move a potentially button-pushing reaction, in this case for Dave, to one that

inclusively makes Mary and Dave feel like a part of the problem and the solution. (^ Achieving a mutual feeling of involvement is the key here.

8 minutes into the Solve conversation:

After Dave's clarification, Mark has achieved enough room on the playing field so that the two employees are not bumping into each other when they talk. Another way to

express this is, Mark has sufficiently deepened the conversation container for the Dave and Mary to no longer push each other's hardwired buttons before they get their common

intentions on the table.

Mark now raps up the gathering by asking one last question, "Dave and Mary, what can the two of you do together to keep focused on the job to be done and remember to keep each other's intentions in the conversation?" Essentially Mark is formally handing off the expanded container to them.


When employees with relationship issues approach us, we normally go into either an automatic reactive or responsive way of listening. If REACTIVE, we may often find ourselves habitually repeating what was said to us earlier in our career. These are often overused platitudes passed on with little effect on resolving real-time relationship conflict.

If we are in a RESPONSIVE mode, we may have the insight to begin a process that will not only efficiently solve the relationship issue, but also provide valuable training to the

employee. The Listen or Solve process gives us a way to respond to real needs, with viable options, that channel the employee's productivity back to the job at hand and

towards cooperative relationships with co-workers. Options that will streamline conversations, minimize the time in conflict, and move the issue towards resolution and cooperation quickly.

The process of Listen or Solve is directly linked to the skills of Intentional Language, the OREO technique, Generous Listening and Questioning Questions. Moreover, the

successful integration of these options into an unforgettable, ultimately useful, real-time tool is to see that their common threads are pulled together by the art of questioning. The

art of questioning can be further simplified by understanding two types of questions: those that PUSH listeners to react to our question and those questions that PULL

listeners respectively into the conversation to continue the dialogue. The bottom line to

using the Listen or Solve process effectively, is to ask more responsive, pulling questions than using reactive, pushing questions - whenever, where ever or whatever the

relationship situation.


Roles & Responsibilities


This group exercise requires one to three days to complete depending on the participants and their desired results. Roles & Responsibilities will create a true feeling of being a team in the shortest amount of time, create channels for cross-functional accountability and resolve the most basic needs of team members such as:

What are my team member's real functions? What are they working on and in what sequence? What are their priorities?
What are they accountable for and to whom? How are they accountable to my organization? What are they doing to be collaborative?
How can I support their efforts?


Each person uses one flip-chart page to describe his or her roles and responsibilities. On a second sheet of paper, the roles and responsibilities are transferred to a Pie Chart and sections are broken down into percentage of time spent on each function.

Starting with the boss, one page is posted before the group.
The person gives an overview of their roles and responsibilities.

Next, each person is asked "Is this what you need (Name) to do in order for you to be successful?"

Each person is given the opportunity to ask for what they need. Action items are written down on a second sheet of flip-chart paper.

Post Workshop

Roles & responsibilities are summarized in a Pie Chart (See Pie Chart below)
Pie Charts are posted in office space.
Pie Charts are used to negotiate whenever new job responsibilities are discussed, changes made in priorities, etc.

Pie Chart

Pie Charts have a long history of representing complex data in a simplified form. They

are also a low cost, highly effective way to manage employee's workloads, priorities,

focus and time. After a work group has established Roles & Responsibilities and basic

accountability (See Roles & Responsibilities section), the Pie Chart becomes the on-the-

job tool for maintaining stability in a changing environment and management of the workflow of each employee.

Pie Charts, properly utilized, can be used to:
• Cool down or heat up an organization. They can help define roles, responsibility,

and accountability.
• Provide a model to delegate successfully and as well as follow the progress of

prioritized tasks.
• Help employees negotiate jobs, tasks & careers.

• Assist managers in assigning or removing responsibilities.

Pie Chart as Workload Measurement Tool

After clarifying roles, responsibilities and accountabilities, the Pie Chart is used as:

• A desktop snapshot of each employee's current functions and responsibilities. • A management tool brought to meetings where job assignments are made,

changed and discussed.
• A career development tool.

• A time management tool.


The Roles Exercise painted a broad picture of what each person thought their functions were. It also created an action-item list of what peers needed from each other to be successful. Finally a Pie Chart tool was introduced allowing each participant to carry the roles and responsibility work back to their employees.

The Accountability Exercise continues this work by going deeply into each function's total accountability. This process takes the participants into the details required to align

commitment, cooperation and compliance between functions.

The Accountability Exercise results in a redesign of the organizations structure to coincide with the group's future vision. By determining detailed accountability between

functions, they create the basis for designing the organization to achieve continuing possibilities of success.

The OREO Technique

This OREO Technique shows how to successfully approach an individual or group

regardless of their behavior, connect to their Core Intentions and bring them back into a constructive conversation

1. Top Cookie Make a value statement that connects you both to a common


2. Filling Make a statement that describes a behavior that is seen as

unproductive and include how you

also have acted this out.

3. Bottom Cookie Make a value statement that connects you both to the results desired and to

your future together if appropriate.

OREO - Sample Statements & Questions

Bottom Cookie Value Behavior Value

Top Cookie Cream Filling

Make a value statement that connects you both to a common history.

" I have enjoyed working

with you for the past three years."

" I know your busy like a m

and I appreciate you

taking the time out to call me back."

" I really appreciate what

you brought up in the meeting."

Make a statement that describes a behavior that is seen as unproductive and include yourself.

" As a former individual

contributor, I know first hand the frustration I felt

when I had to pay attention to other peoples


" I would like to offer you

some constructive criticism on a behavior that I am

working on myself - Listening."

" I have been working on

my tendency to give to much details at meetings.

Can we talk about this same tendency in you? Your group has
complained to me about it several times and I would like to share how I have been working on this problem."

Make a value statement that connects you both to

a common result.

"You have the talent to be a leader. Let's help each other get better at

encouraging our employees to trust their decisions and rely on us as

sounding boards. We can give each other feedback as a part of our one-on- ones on Fridav."

"Let's make an agreement to help each other with

listening. At our regular one-on-one time, we can

each share an experience when it worked. Is that OK?"

"Let's make an agreement to signal each other in

meetings when we see the other person getting too

detailed. How about a thumbs up for the signal? OK!"

"■■ "I look forward to hearing

about our joint progress."

" I was just thinking of you." "How is your team doing since our last talk?"

Daily Guidelines

Show Up
Lead a balanced life between home, vocation and community, so that you come to any

situation rested, conscious, prepared, full of questions, value, solutions and energy. Be sensitive to others hardwiring. Know your intrinsic value in all relationships.

Pay Attention
Be aware of the total environment internally and externally. Feelings, emotions,

intuitions are all working in concert with intellectual, logical and pragmatic skills. Be aware of deep fundamental issues and the infinite ways others give clues to their desires to be seen, understood, accepted, chosen and valued. Remember that people's behavior is their way to get your attention. Respond by asking questions about what they are

talking about. Seek their underlying intention.

Tell the Truth

Rigorous, relentless willingness to see the ways people sabotage, deceive and limit them selves. Continually challenge your personal mental models, mindsets and theories of

how life is. Commit to seeing more and more of the "playing field." Continually deepen your understanding of the structures underlying current events.

No Attachment to the Outcome
Do all that is healthy and supportive for others by working your own issues first, second and third. All you can do is recover more and more of what you had lost in childhood and re-model your inner structure. Through this effort, others will automatically be supported. Then they too will have the choice to react and be victims, or to learn how to respond and be healthy.

Assumptions About Relationships

Addictive - Compulsive
We are addictive - compulsive by nature. To coin a word, this makes us "acronymic," as

we, by our human nature, tend to develop and learn by what repeating what feels good. Then we continue to refine and shorten any process that makes access to the pleasure


Natural Drive
When in relationship, our natural drive is to be seen, understood, accepted, chosen & valued by the other person.

The Problem

Though people are responsible for their verbal and non-verbal behavior, they are not defined only by their behavior. People are fundamentally their Core Intentions - to be

seen, understood, accepted, chosen & valued.

Who we are & how successful we are in life, depends on the breadth of the people who we can productively relate to & generate with, without feeling or creating debilitating residue.

Depth & Breadth of Skills
\^, The effectiveness of our relating &generating depends on the depth and breadth of our

relationship-communication model and associated skills. Whether a person reacts or responds to other's behavior tell volumes about their relationship model.

Growth & Roles
There is no personal growth or success independent of generative relationships with others. Roles are meaningless without a network of people.

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