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CLASS # 2 FALL, 2010 BMA5557: Theories for Action: How do we know if we know what we’re doing?

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Presentation on theme: "CLASS # 2 FALL, 2010 BMA5557: Theories for Action: How do we know if we know what we’re doing?"— Presentation transcript:

1 CLASS # 2 FALL, 2010 BMA5557: Theories for Action: How do we know if we know what we’re doing?

2 Goals Explore dynamics of “micro-leadership”– leading in interpersonal small group situations Understand “theories for action” and how they influence (a) effectiveness and (b) ability to learn from experience

3 Agenda Introduction to case: how effective was Sandy? Why? How could we be helpful to Sandy? Learning and effective action  Theories for action  Ladder of inference  Advocacy and inquiry

4 What grade would you give Sandy? A – outstanding performance B – good, but not outstanding C – Fair, some things good, some not so good D – Mediocre, Sandy did more things wrong than right F – Very poor, Sandy basically flubbed the assignment

5 What did Sandy do that influenced your grade? Met objectives, but more like a checkmark Put Bill on defensive, didn’t work to a resolution Led him on – suggesting he’d succeed when S didn’t expect that +Articulated thoughts clearly Left no room for Bill; anything B raised S said “ no” No resolution, meeting accomplished nothing Started on hearsay basis, meeeting based on emotion rather than facts Says B is problem even though admitting B is in low responsibility job Company waited a year to say “You’ve sucked for a year Something is going on with Bill – moving him down the road sets him up to fail Sandy didn’t ask Bill anything S didn’t recognize that Bill wasn’t responding as expected, didn’t adapt Sandy is wrong person to meet with B, doesn’t have any idea about him Bill left door open but S missed the opportunities S leaves things unresolved, worse off Sandy did job – communicate, but not much human element Why combine review with promotion? Need to prepare – Sandy wasn’t precise, meeting went sideways S didn’t set the stage for what meeting was about – opening made B defensige and led him down the wrong path S started clear, but changed when acknowledged B in unchallenging job; seemed weak to B and things got worse S could have got back on track “You’re not performing. Here’s the plan. Are you on board?” S should ask Bill what’s happening before tearing him down

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7 “There is nothing so practical as a good theory.” --Kurt Lewin

8 Theories for action Espoused theory: the account an individual provides to describe, explain or predict her/his own behavior Theory-in-use: the program (set of decision rules) that would produce an individual’s behavior

9 Model I Made Simple: Everyone’s Theory-in-Use

10 Ladder of inference

11 Ladder of influence: thinking processs We tacitly register some data and ignore other data. We make interpretations based on the data we select, and draw conclusions from them. Most of this occurs quickly, automatically and tacitly, outside of awareness. Hence, our conclusions feel so obvious to us that we see no need to retrace the steps we took from the data to the conclusions we reached.

12 Our skill at reasoning is essential -- and gets us in trouble If we thought about each inference we made, life would pass us by. But people can and do reach different conclusions. When they view their conclusions as obvious, they see no need to say how they reached them. When people disagree, they often hurl conclusions at each other from the tops of their respective ladders. This makes it hard to resolve differences and to learn from one another.

13 Model II (adapted from Argyris and Schön) Core ValuesStrategiesOutcomes Valid information Free, informed choice Internal commitment Combine advocacy & inquiry Collaborate in designing and managing relationships, processes Public testing Double-loop learning

14 An example: effective feedback

15 Effective feedback IneffectiveEffective GlobalSpecific EvaluativeDescriptive AttributiveBehavioral UnwantedWanted


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