Self-Esteem and Assertiveness
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I posed a question on Twitter and FACEBOOK, what would you like to hear more about? Lorraine Allman (@beindemand) replied with the following post. “Would be interested to learn how/if NLP can be applied to support everyday business decisions…?”
So here goes…..
NLP can be used as support for everyday business decisions and as for the how, well there are lots of options. One place to start is by considering two of the underlying principles of NLP, “positive intention” and “ecology”. NLP takes a philosophical position that we always have a positive intention behind all that we do. Sadly sometimes it is just the best we can come up with based on limited knowledge or resources and is not always positive for others. So, for example, we might chose the best of a selection of poor choices. At other times we will be able to see a true positive intention behind our decisions. When applying this principle to decision making start by asking;
“What is the positive intention behind the need to make this decision?”
This identifies what outcome is desired and what the motivation behind it could be. Further exploration can be undertaken with regard to each alternative on offer. At The Gwiz Learning Partnership we devised the following model as a way of exploring the alternatives further.
The IBO Model ©The Gwiz Learning Partnership
- The ‘intention – behaviour – outcome’ (IBO©) model is designed to help us to be more flexible in encouraging us to acknowledge and seek more options and can help in decision making.
- This helps to counter ‘automatic behaviour’ where we continue doing the same thing even when it doesn’t really serve us.
- The model suggests that for every context, an intention has a range of behaviours that might meet that intention. Each of those potential behaviours then has a range of outcomes depending on the subjective experiences of the other players. This ripple effect of potential outcomes then becomes systemic when other players are behaving in that context too.
Potential Ripple Effect of Intention Behaviour Outcome (IBO©)
By exploring each of the potential behaviours and outcomes we can gain more clarity and begin to weigh our options. If we then consider “ecology” we can take the next step. Ecology could be described as the impact the decision will have on the system. In business the system could be the organisation, the team or the market place for instance. From a coaching perspective we might at this point introduce the Cartesian Co-ordinates Questions and apply them to each of the options under consideration.
What would happen if you did?
What would happen if you didn’t?
What wouldn’t happen if you did?
What wouldn’t happen if you didn’t?
The first two questions can often be answered very consciously and can be used in straight forward coaching sessions. Using the third and fourth questions can bring surprising new insights however it is important to set a positive pre-frame so that the client feels comfortable considering these slightly unusual questions. An NLP Master Practitioner would use these to facilitate the coachee accessing alternative perspectives and so enriching the data available for decision making.
A second set of ecology questions equally valuable come from the Humanistic approach as proposed by Julie Silverthorn (Neuroenergetics);
Is this healthy for me?
Is this healthy for others?
Is this congruent with Spirit?
If you were no longer thinking about the problem, what would you be thinking of?
John Overdurf (Neuroenergetics) uses an alternative question that can help people gain furhter clarity. “If this were no longer an issue, how would you be?”
For people faced with a dilemma, NLP has a very useful intervention called the Visual Squash. This is taught at Practitioner level as a formal intervention involving visualisation and the use of metaphor. The client is facilitated in coming up with a solution that may be a synthesis of the two options or may realise that one is the preferred option. At Master Practitioner level this technique evolves into a conversational intervention that is perhaps more appropriate in business coaching.
There are many other aspects of NLP that can be useful in decision making such as: timeline, well formed outcomes, strategies, logical levels, meta model, sleight of mouth, clean questioning, etc. Robert Dilts has a great on-line resource for those of you who would like to explore these ideas further http://nlpuniversitypress.com/ This website is an online encyclopedia and worth bookmarking.
There are also lots of useful NLP articles on our website
If you are interested in finding out more about NLP do contact me direct as we offer training from Practitioner through to Trainer. We also hold an NLP Practice group one evening per month. Each month we look at a new topic. You will find more information in the tab about NLP.
Thank you for reading my blog. Do let me know what else you would like me to write about.