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Getting Out of the Habit of Telling

by Katie Anderson
August 27, 2018

Getting Out of the Habit of Telling

by Katie Anderson
August 27, 2018 | Comments (15)

“I love solving problems and for the most part I’m pretty good at it,” says lean coach Katie Anderson, “But the problem is as leaders, as coaches, and frankly as humans, we are far too much in the habit of telling rather than truly developing people’s capability to solve problems.”

Katie’s ten-minute talk from the lean transformation summit in Nashville delves into a different approach. Please take a look at Katie share "three practices that I have put into place to personally get out of the habit of telling.”

 

 

 

The views expressed in this post do not necessarily represent the views or policies of The Lean Enterprise Institute.
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15 Comments | Post a Comment
Tim Graven August 27, 2018
1 Person AGREES with this comment

Katie, really well done and practical tips for us to use in our daily struggle to "coach" not "tell."  Old habits are so hard to overcome and step 1 is always admitting there's a problem; but after that you need practical steps to take to begin to correct and I feel like these are 3 we could incorporate easily and quickly into our daily lives.  Thanks again and keep up the good work!

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Katie Anderson August 27, 2018

Tim - 

Thanks for the positive feedback! Glad that you enjoyed the talk and found the tips actionable. I put them in place each and every day! -Katie

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Mark Graban August 27, 2018

Such an important message, Katie. It's human nature to tell others what to do. It's usually well intended, but it doesn't work.

There are valuable lessons that come from the field of "Motivational Interviewing, including:

Telling others what to do creates pushback (almost like an equal and opposite reaction).

At best, telling people what to do creates compliance, which isn't as sustainable as real change.

This human nature is sometimes described as "the righting reflex" and we can be mindful of it. 

http://www.mollykellogg.com/tip-151-taming-your-righting-reflex/

 

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Katie Anderson August 27, 2018

Thanks for the comments and for sharing the link. I like the term "righting reflex". My practice of taking a pause and connecting with intention is a technique to ask my righting relex to step aside, as Molly writes in the link you shared.  

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Heath Kelley August 27, 2018

Katie, thanks! This is great, I appreciate you sharing how you intentional ask questions to help others own their thinking. Love the clarity pause!!! 

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Katie Anderson August 27, 2018

Thanks Heath!

I borrowed the term Clarity Pause from Karen Martin. It aptly describes the practice I have used for years to ground myself in my intention in the moments. 

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Katie Anderson August 27, 2018
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Thanks everyone for the positive feedback on the Lean Talk and your reflections on your personal practice too.

FYI, I put together some more details from the presenation with some slides and additional resources on my blog:

https://kbjanderson.com/3-tips-for-getting-out-of-the-habit-of-telling-lean-talk-from-the-lean-transformation-summit-2018/

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Daniel Betgeorge August 30, 2018
1 Person AGREES with this comment

Katie,

Wonderful content and so relevant for my team and leadership approach. Stealing shamelessly and excited to see what comes!

Thank you

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Katie Anderson August 31, 2018

Daniel  - Thanks for the positive feedback! Happy to hear that my 3 practices resonated with you too. Let me know how they help influence you and your team's quality of question asking. -Katie

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Lory Moniz August 31, 2018

Thank you Katie enjoyed this piece.

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Katie Anderson August 31, 2018

Thanks Lory!

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Jim Hite September 07, 2018

Katie, Great talk. This reminds me of the Chinese Proverb: "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

In this case you're facilitating their thoughts to find a solution. 

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Katie Anderson September 10, 2018

Thanks Jim!

Yes, its about facilitating their thoughts to find a solution...but importantly, to find *their* own solution rather than you trying to guide them to your solution. 

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Richard September 07, 2018

Very good, clear approach that can be used.

Thanks

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Katie Anderson September 10, 2018

Thanks Richard - glad you enjoyed it!

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