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Solution Focus
Gerard Chiva
@GerardChiva
gerard.chiva@gmail.com
gerardchiva.com
V 2.2A POSITIVE APPROACH TO CHANGE
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@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
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@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Exercise in Pairs (I)
• Select a partner
• One coach, one coachee
• Coachee selects one issue, conflict or problem
you’d like to solve
• Coach asks these three questions to coachee:
1. What do you think is causing it?
2. How do you feel about it?
3. What is preventing you from solving this issue?
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Exercise in Pairs (II)
Coach now asks these three SF questions to coachee.
• Let’s just suppose that something happened and
your issue has been solved …
1. How would you know that your issue has been
solved?
2. What would be different for you then?
3. What do you need to make this work?
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Exercise in Pairs (III)
• Talk about:
– What was the difference?
– What did you notice?
– Emotion, easy/difficult, etc.
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
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John wants a new job
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@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
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Science
gerardchiva.com
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Cynefin
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Origins
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Brief Therapy
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Insoo Kim Berg & Steve Shazer
The Miracle Question
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@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com
Positive Routes
gerardchiva.com
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Appreciative Inquiry Intentional Change Theory
Positive Psychology
gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com 36
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Positive Emotional Attractor
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
NEA PEA
Flight or fight Novelty, excitement
Solution Focus
Dr. Peter Szabó
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Find what works, and do more of it
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Stop doing what doesn’t work
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
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Shaping the Future
Illuminate Resources
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@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Find new perspectives
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Tools
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Solution Circle
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Daniel Meier
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
If your team was able to solve the problems and
conflicts really well and could turn into a true
“superteam” – what would this team look like in one
year time?
– What would you notice that told you that everything is working
well in the team?
– What would our colleagues and customers be saying about us?
– What exactly would each of us be doing differently?
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
• What are we doing that gets us to 2 (or 5)? We
could be much lower, but you say we are
already at 2 (or 5)
• What is it that we are doing pretty well, then?
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Choose three days in the coming two weeks in
which you will look for small visible signs of the
“superteam” state you would like to have in the
future
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Team spend one hour to tell each other what they
had discovered that could be interpreted as first
glimpses of the future team.
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Strengths Tools
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Realise2
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@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
• Outcome
– What is the objective of this coaching?
– What do you want to achieve in the long term?
– The future perfect
• Scaling
– On a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 representing the future perfect and 0 the worst it has ever been, where are you on that
scale today?
– You are at n now: What did you do to get this far?
– How would you know you had got to n+1?
• Know-how and Resources
– What helps you perform at n on the scale, rather than 0?
– What did you do to make it happen? How did you do that?
– What did you do differently?
• Affirm and Action
– What’s already going well?
– What is the next small step? What would you like to do personally, straight away?
– You are at n now, what would it take to get you to n+1?
• Review
– What’s better?
– What did you do that made the change happen?
– What effects have the changes had?
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
@GerardChiva - gerard.chiva@gmail.com gerardchiva.com
Gerard Chiva
gerard.chiva@gmail.com
@GerardChiva
http://gerardchiva.com

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Solution focus coaching - A positive approach to change

Editor's Notes

  1. Gerard Chiva Lean & Agile Consultant, Systemic Coach and Executive Coach
  2. Focusing on problems leads us to the past. It leads us to try to change what can’t be changed. Focusing on problems leads to blame, excuses and justifications. It’s complicated, slow, and often drains our mental energy.   Focusing on solutions, however, immediately creates energy in our minds. We open up ideas and possibilities.
  3. This doesn’t mean we don’t address problems, it means we address them by analyzing the way forward, instead of their causes. To illustrate this, let’s do an exercise in pairs.
  4. If people were cars, fixing people problems would be easy.
  5. Check the engine, find the cause of the trouble replace the faulty part and move on. But people, and social systems, are not machines. Focusing on problems and their causes is a great way of getting cars back on the road, but it’s not much use when you are trying to help people move forward.
  6. Take John. He wants to step into a new role in his organization
  7. But he lacks confidence.
  8. Some people might try to help John by asking WHY he feels this way.
  9. Perhaps the answer lies in this past.
  10. “When I was a child a teacher humiliated me in front of the class”.
  11. But, concentrating on the causes of his problem soon leaves John buried under an avalanche of painful memories. He knows why he lacks confidence but nothing in his life has changed. He still feels just the same.
  12. Focusing in problems turns you into an expert on what is wrong. To become an expert in what is right you have to start thinking about solutions.
  13. A helpful question to John would be “let’s just suppose that something happened and you had all the confidence you needed, what would you be doing differently?”:   “I’d have the courage to be honest with my team” “I’d be able to say what I really think in meetings” “I’d be speaking at conferences and enjoying it”   Now that John has a picture of how he’d like to be, he has something to work towards.  
  14. This is what Solution Focus is about. Instead of emphasizing what’s wrong, we encourage people to think about what is right. We encourage people to look at the resources they already have, at their strengths. VISION – RESOURCES – STRENGTHS  Building something new
  15. There are two essential issues with how conventional wisdom tries to solve problems or create sustainable change
  16. These two issues have to do with a lack of understanding of how our brain works, from one side
  17. And from neglecting the principles of complex adaptive systems from the other
  18. The history of psychology, psychiatry, management and team development has been based on detecting what is wrong and fixing it. Assuming that humans are like machines, where you just go and fix the wrong piece and everything gets back to normal. We are treating Complex Adaptive Systems as if they were cars. Complex systems are not constructed, they are grown.
  19. Thinking in problems puts our brain in defensive mode, raising levels of different substances like cortisol and adrenaline and, activating our limbic system. When we focus on problems and weaknesses we diminish people, instead when we engage people's curiosity and imagination we inspire them.
  20. The same way, thinking about squeezing the juice of one of those fresh lemons in your mouth makes you all salivate.
  21. We cannot unlearn or delete a behavior or attitude from our brain. It doesn’t work like that. Our brain is very good a detecting patterns and repetitions and automating them, once automated they cannot be deleted. So, trying to be less of something is useless. But, we do it all the time.   We want to be less something, get rid of something, our war against whatever, stop doing something, etc … We spend our life moving away from stuff we don’t like, perhaps if we decided to move towards stuff we want things would be better.
  22. On the other hand, our brain has a powerful capability, Neuroplasticity, which allows it to create new paths, new wirings, and new neural networks. So, you can create something new, which is more powerful than the old habit. And, when we focus on solutions, that is exactly what we are doing, we are creating something new.
  23. It is creating, versus fixing.
  24. Brief Therapy was developed in the early 1980s by a research group in Milwaukee including Insoo Kim Berg and Steve Shazer. The group was driven to find something effective and efficient to help clients start successfully doing whatever they strive for. They began to experiment with “what might work” instead of finding “what caused the problem”. By concentrating on building solutions, they were able to reduce the average consultation time by 70% - retaining the same success rate as more usual forms of therapy.   In 1997 Peter Szabó started to transfer these findings to the world of coaching. The result is called Solution Focused Coaching.
  25. These 3 disciplines, all in different ways, assert the value of looking at what is useful, functional and desired instead of looking at disorder, problems, causes and weaknesses Progress can be made without seeing people and organizations as things that need to be fixed.   All three approaches are rooted in years of application and research. All have shown to be effective in action, in organizational work and elsewhere. All share an interest in focusing on what already works rather than on what the problems may be.
  26. People have problems and they want to get rid of them. What all these approaches advise, in their different ways, is that identifying the problem is less of a guide to making progress than focusing elsewhere.
  27. When people change in a sustainable way they go through this in a discontinuous fashion. When we change we don’t do it as a smooth linear fashion. There are periods of long stability followed by very short periods of rapid change. In complexity theory and systems theory these are called moments of emergence. Actually the way we experience them is they're kind of epiphanies. They're like oh my God moments. When this happens there is no way back. There is a new system. Acceptance, respect, pacience, humbleness Example quit smoking incrementaly
  28. What moves us ahead in the change process is the positive emotional attractor. This combination of invoking a possible part of your vision and your strengths is what we call activating or arousing the Positive Emotional Attractor. We diminish people when we focus on problems and weaknesses, or we impose our will or we try to engineer or fix them. Instead when we engage people's natural powers of curiosity and imagination we inspire them.
  29. The difference between the positive emotional attractor and the negative emotional attractor is the difference in thinking about your dreams versus reality. It's thinking about possibilities versus problem. Hope versus fear. Feeling like an optimist versus a pessimist.   The PEA is: Feeling positive and hopeful; thinking about the future, dreams, and possibilities; Being optimistic, focusing on one’s strengths; Excited about trying something new, experimenting; and Liberation of dopamine Focus Positive expectations Humor Novelty The NEA is: Feeling negative and fear; thinking about the past or present, expectations of others and problems; Being pessimistic, focusing on one’s weaknesses; Feeling obligated to things you “should” or are “expected by others” to do, like a performance improvement plan; Liberation of noradrenaline and cortisol Flight or fight response Acceleration of hear beat Blood moves to muscles
  30. Albert Einstein once said: “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness as the one that created it.” One of the key aspects of SF Coaching is that we mainly work on creating awareness of the solution. We switch from exploring the level of the problem to exploring the level of solutions. We can create new realities. Realities that open up completely new options and choices.   In SF coaching we assume that the solution has nothing to do with the problem. The solution does not care why the problem occurred.
  31. By 'broke', we mean that somebody in the organization is dissatisfied and wants something to be different. We start to work with the people who want something different and are prepared to do something about it - not the others (who may be ambivalent or who do not see any need for improvement).  And it is not only that. Many times we think we know what is broken, but that might be just a symptom. It is difficult to assess cause and effect in a complex system. Weaknesses in one context can be strengths in another
  32. No problem happens all the time. If you note when the solution is happening already, whether spontaneously, by accident, or even only in part, you have priceless knowledge.
  33. In order to break up blocked situations, we often have to do something very different and have to leave our well-trodden paths.
  34. No analytical questions about the past … … but questions about shaping the future How did the problem arise? What do you need in order to solve this problem successfully? Who caused the problem? Imagine a miracle happens and all your problems are solved. What exactly will be different then? Why did he do that? How could he behave differently in the future? What is the worst aspect of this issue? What exactly should be different in the future? Why? What behavior would indicate to other people that you have reached your goal? Why did it not work as intended? How should it be? What were the causes of the failure? What do we need to achieve this?
  35. Illuminating Resources. Ask about and uncover competences and skills   We assume that all skills necessary to master a turbulent situation are already present. It is not about covering deficits but about illuminating existing skills and strengths and using them for the development of a solution.
  36. Find new perspectives. Change the focus of your awareness.   Example: stop smoking vs running a marathon   You don’t ask “why do you want to quit smoking”, you ask “what will be different if you quit smoking?” or “imagine you quit smoking what will you be able to do?” or “you don’t want to smoke, what do you want instead?” I want to be healthy or I want to be able to climb stairs without getting tired. What do you need to do to achieve that? …
  37. I have often been in situations where individuals or whole groups of people are stuck in suffering and complaining. Team meetings and breaks are used to list the shortcomings and the mismanagement, but the crucial step toward a solution is not taken. I have worked with teams confronted with change situations of vital importance who, nevertheless, remained immobilized, in resignation, wanting to keep everything just the way it was.
  38. Maybe not all steps needed. Depends on the situation. I will explain some of this with a real example.   Preparing the Ground This first step serves to clarify the framework, to gain trust in the coach and agree on what is necessary for everybody to commit to collaborate enthusiastically Expectations and Goals The goal of this step is to define the criteria for the success of the meeting. What goals have to be reached and what expectations have to be fulfilled to make participation worthwhile? Hot Topics In this step, we determine the topics where improvement is aimed for Highlights The participants start looking for situations in which the problem or the conflict either did not happen at all or was less severe. They find out which skills enabled them to accomplish this Future Perfect The team designs a very precise picture of a future in which the problems have been solved Scaling Dance The individual team members assess current situation. We want to find out what has already worked well in the past Steps In this step we design concrete measures that the team can implement in the near future – the sooner the better Personal Mission By giving an observation task or an action-oriented task, attention is directed to certain aspects of the implementation which continue supporting the process in the team’s day-to-day life
  39. There are two tools in the market which are based on analyzing your character strengths: VIA Strengths Realise2
  40. The aim is to help the client create an awareness of what’s best about themselves and others, and to assist them in embracing and using these strengths. With this heightened awareness they will be better positioned to build positive relationships, discover deeper happiness, and achieve their life goals.
  41. Although it might be needed in some cases, we spend too much time and energy trying to get better at our weaknesses. What we should do instead is use our strengths to by-pass our weaknesses. Don’t waste your time getting better at your weaknesses.
  42. OSKAR   Outcome What is the objective of this coaching? What do you want to achieve today? What do you want to achieve in the long term? How will you know this coaching has been of use to you? The future perfect   Scaling On a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 representing the future perfect and 0 the worst it has ever been, where are you on that scale today? You are at n now: What did you do to get this far? How would you know you had got to n+1?   Know-how and Resources What helps you perform at n on the scale, rather than 0? When does the outcome already happen for you, even a little bit? What did you do to make it happen? How did you do that? What did you do differently? What would other people say you are doing well?   Affirm and Action What’s already going well? What is the next small step? What would you like to do personally, straight away? You are at n now, what would it take to get you to n+1?   Review What’s better? What did you do that made the change happen? What effects have the changes had? What do you think will change next?
  43. Mentality Next time your children or your team come to you with a problem, you have two options You can either ask “Why did this happen?” or ask “What shall we do about this?” Your choice Do not use retrospectives for team development, only for process improvement