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Toronto Change Management Blog

Info, updates & opinions about change management & solution focus from Richard Toker & Alan Kay

We are mediators and facilitators, not leaders

A Solution Focus coach serves more as a facilitator than a leader. This is true regardless of the session type — group or private. Why? Because people seeking coaching must initiate and lead the way to their own solutions in order for them to stick. A great example of mediation/facilitation versus leadership comes from Alcoholics Anonymous and the organization’s infamous 12 Steps to recovery. Though it may seem from the outside that people in an AA program are cured or healed by the leadership and influence of their therapists, they are...

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Apr 22 2016

The Skeleton Keys in Solution Focus

How do you arrive at a positive solution to a problem without knowing all the details? Use a Skeleton Key. Solution Focus coaches often refer to their set of ‘Skeleton Keys’. The Solution Focus term was first coined in the 1980s by Steve de Shazer,one of the founders of Solution Focus. De Shazer used the analogy to illustrate how Solution Focus coaches are able to unlock the doors that prevent people from reaching the solutions they seek without knowing the details of their problems. This is inline with the grounding theory...

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Apr 21 2016

How to leverage planning in an ever-changing tactical world

Have you noticed how your colleagues are scrambling in most meetings? Do you wish everyone could sing from the same song sheet? Do you long for the good old days when things didn’t seem as out of control? steroids What’s going on? Unless you live in a walled garden, the digital revolution – the web and social media – has radically reframed our customer’s behaviour, our competitors’ behaviours and our organization’s operational behaviours, it’s not just a marketing issue. Hence, the apparent chaos and barrage of tactics that may or may not be...

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Take it slow to go fast

Perceived and reported ‘failure’ is a hot topic for many organizations. ‘Post-mortems’ are a standard practice adopted by many industries to evaluate the success of an organized effort, endeavour, strategy, event, etc. They have a clear focus—to assess what went wrong. But what does that really achieve? Post-mortems are a formal way of practicing problem-focus. In Solution Focus management, problem-focus is diminished, as it is — more often than not — detrimental to progress.   Though identifying a problem can be helpful in business, devoting time to tearing apart the work of...

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