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A low-conflict language for discussing and managing toxic behavior
Detox your team
Ken Power
Principal Engineer, Cisco Sys...
2© 2015 Ken Power
3© 2015 Ken Power
Why explore toxic
behaviors?
4© 2015 Ken Power
Blaming
5© 2015 Ken Power
Defensiveness
6© 2015 Ken Power
Stonewalling
7© 2015 Ken Power
Contempt
8© 2015 Ken Power
What is your
‘common’ toxic
behavior?
What brings it
out?
9© 2015 Ken Power
10© 2015 Ken Power
Antidotes for
blame
Are you willing to go on without blaming?
Address the behavior, do not attack the
p...
11© 2015 Ken Power
12© 2015 Ken Power
Antidotes for
defensiveness
Active listening – use when team are not
hearing each other accurately. “Bo...
13© 2015 Ken Power
14© 2015 Ken Power
Antidotes for
stonewalling
Check for flooding and soothe
Get permission to proxy / speak for team
membe...
15© 2015 Ken Power
16© 2015 Ken Power
Antidotes for
contempt
Are you willing to resolve this without
sarcasm?
Ventilate to coach
Check for fl...
17© 2015 Ken Power
18© 2015 Ken Power
Call to Action: What will you
do with your teams?
19© 2015 Ken Power
Protocol for
Dealing with
Toxic
Behaviors
Research says that teams that have a
conflict protocol perfor...
20© 2015 Ken Power
•  Think about your ideal team. How would that team handle conflicts
and disagreements?
•  What are som...
21© 2015 Ken Power
•  Educate your teams on their impact
•  Call them when you see them; agree to proceed without them
•  ...
22© 2015 Ken Power
Increase Positivity During Conflict
using COIN (Context, Observation,
Impact, Next)
23© 2015 Ken Power
•  Context puts the event or behavior in a time frame and setting so
that it can be remembered. Where a...
24© 2015 Ken Power
•  John Gottman. Why Marriages Succeed Or Fail.
•  John Gottman. The Science Of Trust: Emotional Attune...
@ken_power
http://www.linkedin.com/in/kenpower
ken.power@gmail.com
http://kenpower.ie/
With some
graphics by
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Detox your team: a low-conflict language for discussin and managing toxic behaviour

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Slide deck from my Agile 2015 session in Washington DC, exploring toxic behaviours. The session takes people through four specific toxins that show up in teams and organisations, and goes on to discuss some ways to detox your team.

Published in: Business
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Detox your team: a low-conflict language for discussin and managing toxic behaviour

  1. 1. A low-conflict language for discussing and managing toxic behavior Detox your team Ken Power Principal Engineer, Cisco Systems Thursday August 6, 2015 @ken_power
  2. 2. 2© 2015 Ken Power
  3. 3. 3© 2015 Ken Power Why explore toxic behaviors?
  4. 4. 4© 2015 Ken Power Blaming
  5. 5. 5© 2015 Ken Power Defensiveness
  6. 6. 6© 2015 Ken Power Stonewalling
  7. 7. 7© 2015 Ken Power Contempt
  8. 8. 8© 2015 Ken Power What is your ‘common’ toxic behavior? What brings it out?
  9. 9. 9© 2015 Ken Power
  10. 10. 10© 2015 Ken Power Antidotes for blame Are you willing to go on without blaming? Address the behavior, do not attack the person Soften the start-up Find the request behind the criticism Ventilate to coach Use “I feel … I want” statements.
  11. 11. 11© 2015 Ken Power
  12. 12. 12© 2015 Ken Power Antidotes for defensiveness Active listening – use when team are not hearing each other accurately. “Bob, what did you hear Jim say?” 2% rule
  13. 13. 13© 2015 Ken Power
  14. 14. 14© 2015 Ken Power Antidotes for stonewalling Check for flooding and soothe Get permission to proxy / speak for team member Address fears of what will happen Encourage engagement
  15. 15. 15© 2015 Ken Power
  16. 16. 16© 2015 Ken Power Antidotes for contempt Are you willing to resolve this without sarcasm? Ventilate to coach Check for flooding and soothe Use “I feel … I want…” statements
  17. 17. 17© 2015 Ken Power
  18. 18. 18© 2015 Ken Power Call to Action: What will you do with your teams?
  19. 19. 19© 2015 Ken Power Protocol for Dealing with Toxic Behaviors Research says that teams that have a conflict protocol perform better than teams who don’t.
  20. 20. 20© 2015 Ken Power •  Think about your ideal team. How would that team handle conflicts and disagreements? •  What are some behaviors you want to have happen when conflict occurs? •  What are some things you do not want to happen when conflict occurs? •  How will you hold one another accountable for these agreements? •  What will you do if someone breaks an agreement? Conflict Protocol Questions
  21. 21. 21© 2015 Ken Power •  Educate your teams on their impact •  Call them when you see them; agree to proceed without them •  Create a conflict protocol with your teams •  Train your team to deal with toxins, e.g., COIN Some general antidotes to toxic behaviors
  22. 22. 22© 2015 Ken Power Increase Positivity During Conflict using COIN (Context, Observation, Impact, Next)
  23. 23. 23© 2015 Ken Power •  Context puts the event or behavior in a time frame and setting so that it can be remembered. Where and when did this occur? •  ︎Observation describes the actions and behavior that wereObservation describes the actions and behavior that were witnessed, without evaluation or interpretation of the intent. •  ︎Impact speaks to the reason for concern. Describe in a neutral wayImpact speaks to the reason for concern. Describe in a neutral way the impact on you, other people, the work, the organization. •  ︎Next – a request for change. Establish agreements andNext – a request for change. Establish agreements and understandings about what will be different in the future.
  24. 24. 24© 2015 Ken Power •  John Gottman. Why Marriages Succeed Or Fail. •  John Gottman. The Science Of Trust: Emotional Attunement For Couples. •  John Gottman. The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. •  Virginia Satir. Lots of stuff. •  CRR Global. Organization and Relationship System Coaching (ORSC). http://crrglobal.com/ •  CRR Global. Increasing Positivity During Conflict using COIN (Context, Observation, Impact, Next). http://www.crrglobal.com/_downloads/Coin-Conversation.pdf References
  25. 25. @ken_power http://www.linkedin.com/in/kenpower ken.power@gmail.com http://kenpower.ie/ With some graphics by

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