Coming to terms with Our Boss – using Option Solving?”

Just recently, I found myself taking with two executives who were rather frustrated with their current boss relationship. He was located overseas, fairly young, very ambitious, and wanted to make his mark. This was more than reflected in his need to feel in charge and know every detail about what was going on with these two executives. What he didn’t seem to grasp was that they were smart, had long experience in the company, were clearly competent, and well respected in their roles. They didn’t feel the need to be micromanaged.

Their dilemma was how to handle this without jeopardizing their careers. So I familiarized them with the option solving technique and then we set to work.

Their first task was to create an effective question with appropriate consider-ations, which came through as: “What is our preferred option for a “meet-ing of the mind” with our boss: considering his need to be in “control,” he’s undermining morale, and he’s not helping his career?” There were two other considerations, but chose these three as the most important to minimize question complexity.

With an optimal question in play, they were now in a position to prepare two outlier “bookends.” Bookends become the extreme limits in options and a spur any participants’ intuitive creativity so that they can produce a range of more likely options. The two extremes they developed were: “Both walk out,” at one end, with, “Give our full cooperation” at the other. Why these were not acceptable are given in our Latest Example.

I now challenged them to find at least five alternatives and they went on to conjure up seven, as you will see in our Latest Example, one of them was: “Speak with him and his boss”… Option E. The other six options are there to be viewed in our Latest Example. Can you come up with others?

I then suggested they take a 10 minute break, as a form of emotional distancing. When they returned, we uncovered their option solving pictogram and they reviewed it quickly, as a reminder to their intuitive mind, and then chose the one that best met their situation. They then put together an action initiative, while it was still fresh in their minds. This would be their kick-starter.

If you have an issue example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.
Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting in 2 weeks: “A surprise
example?” We’re always interested in your COMMENTS or go to peter@ileadershipsolutions.com to connect with the blogger.)

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Peeling the Onion: My Next Career Step – using Option Solving?”

In our last blog, a client who moved to Europe 2 years ago for pursuing a fairly prominent position in the country of the mother company, had to figure out his next career step as his assignment was coming to a close. As his family were ready to move back home, he decided to pursue a position offered back in the US. He now had to decide the best way of going about that, so decided to Peel the Onion on his earlier option solving exercise to figure out the optimum way forward.

With his now strong familiarity with the technique, he immediately set-about producing an appropriate question with considerations, which turned out to be: “What is my best option in taking the US position (Option D): considering that I have to complete the IMD course, my family wishes to return to the US asap, the need to ensure proper positioning toward my next career step, and need a success strategy for this new position?” These were only 50% of his total considerations, so as to reduce the question’s complexity.

Now that the right rational question was ready to present to his intuitive mind, it was important to prepare two extreme-minded “bookends.” They serve as two option-boundaries to act as back-stops for future options and are used to spark the imaginative nature of the intuitive mind for the most plausible options. The two he developed were: “Renegotiate the terms and conditions for my new role,” at one end, with, “Take a lower profile role” at the other. The indicators why these were not acceptable are given in our Latest Example.

It was now possible for him to determine at least five alternatives and, as you will see in our Latest Example, one of them was: “Request as an interim position to be reviewed in 6 months for an upgrade position.”… Option C. The other four options are available in our Latest Example. Can you come up with others?

Again, I encouraged him to sleep on his five new sub-options, as a means of emotional distancing, and then choose the one that he felt would best suit his situation by the following morning. I advised him to follow that intuitive call and work with it until a better option came up. He did sleep on it and then set about creating an action initiative, while the whole issue was still fresh in his mind.

If you have an issue example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.
Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting in 2 weeks: “Trying to come to terms with our boss?” We’re always interested in your COMMENTS or go to peter@ileadershipsolutions.com to connect with the blogger.)