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Toronto Change Management Blog

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

Ditch the debate — grab a seat at the kitchen table

There are many ways for a group to work toward a good solution. In Solution Focus, debate is not one of them. Instead Solution Focus coaches and practitioners look to the roundtable model. A roundtable is a place where many voices can be heard and a dialogue can evolve to lead a group in the direction that the majority wants to go. A debate is much more cut and dry: there are two sides, battling it out for victory with little to no real consideration for counter arguments to be...

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Personal branding…again!

  There’s no shortage of advice and content out there on personal branding, because there’s no shortage of demand. So why not reprise a couple of popular post of Alan’s on this all-to-important-but-neglected chore, from his Fry Monkeys blog. This is personal branding the solutions focus way — i.e., the focus is on strengths, assets and resources; not on what needs work: “7 Steps to Build Your Personal Brand Story…Now!” ...

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Two important articles on mental illness and Teams

The New York Times SundayReview had two remarkable articles on January 17th, on the same page no less, if you happened to be reading it offline as I was that morning. The first, “Redefining Mental Illness,” by T. M. Luhrmann, interprets a recent report by the British Psychological Association and compares it to  new thinking by the National Institute of Mental Health. This is pertaining to diagnoses and labels, such as “mental illness, psychosis or schizophrenia.” The conlusions are that some people find that identifying themselves as having an illness is useful and...

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Finding the Skeleton Keys: An interview with Alan Kay

The Betternxt blog will be conducting an ongoing interview series with Solution Focus experts from around the Globe. This week we sat down with Alan Kay to talk Skeleton Keys — why Solution Focus coaches depend on them, why Alan uses them, and why they work. What is a ‘Skeleton Key’ in Solution Focus? I think Steve de Shazer coined the phrase to help people understand the notion that in Solution Focus we are helping the individual find the answers for themselves. Our job is to open the lock in order for...

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The Art of the Better Question

Solution Focus coaching springs from the idea that any person seeking clarity about their workplace issues already possesses the answers — they just need to dig a little deeper. Effective Solution Focus coaching involves the use of ‘direct’ questions to unearth the answers. These questions are often referred to as ‘better’ because they are a series of familiar questions posed in a fresh way. So just what exactly is a ‘better’ question? Let’s compare the following seemingly similar questions to examine the differences between an ordinary question and a better question: 1)...

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