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Structured thinking How to use the pyramid principle February 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Structured thinking How to use the pyramid principle February 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Structured thinking How to use the pyramid principle February 2012

2 2 What’s this tool useful for? The pyramid principle is a really helpful technique for working out the core elements of an issue or topic – i.e. what really matters. In a coaching context it can be used to help coachees self-identify actions or steps that will help them achieve their goals, by: helping them simplify complex issues down to what’s important helping them check their reasoning – and to be confident in their decisions helping them bring greater clarity to their goals and be able to share that thinking Like all tools, the pyramid principle takes a bit of practice – so you might want to use it more than once with your coachees 1 2 3

3 3 Imagine you received this letter … Dear Janet, Remember last Saturday afternoon when I was playing in the park with my boyfriend and you came over, and he told me that when my back was turned, you kissed him? And also, on Sunday when you came to my house and my Mom made you a tuna fish salad for lunch and you said: “Yech! That’s the worst salad I ever ate!”? And yesterday, when my cat brushed against your leg, you kicked her and threatened to sic your dog “Monster” on her? Well, for all of these reasons, I hate you, and I no longer want to be your friend. Lucy Source:

4 4 … wouldn’t it have been clearer like this? Source: Dear Janet, I HATE you. Here are my reasons: 1)You stole my boyfriend. 2)You insulted my mother. 3)You scared my cat. Lucy Main statement or “governing thought” Reasons supporting the governing thought

5 5 Pyramids can be supported by INDUCTIVE logic … Source: Dexter should stay in Vienna Dexter has a good job in Vienna Vienna is a great place to live Dexter’s pals all live in Vienna Inductive reasoning means drawing a general conclusion from specific examples

6 6 … or, alternatively, by DEDUCTIVE logic (and sometimes both!) Source: Dexter should stay in Vienna Dexter wants to live in a large city Deductive reasoning means drawing a specific conclusion from the information available Because he only speaks German, he’s limited to Vienna, Zurich or Germany Dexter dislikes Zurich, and doesn’t want to live in Germany If Dexter doesn’t want to learn a new language, Vienna is his only option


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