Structured Practice Session
Meeting Agenda - August 24, 2003
(GENERAL REMINDER: Please show up on time or a few minutes early, so
we can start right at 2, giving plenty of time for both the presentation
and free practice sessions.)
15 minutes: Open frame. Those in attendance
talk briefly about what's up for them, comments about last month's meeting,
ideas and suggestions.
Feature Presentation (approx..
John-Erik Omland: Structured Practice -
fine-tuning your outcome frame questions.
A trap that we, as programmers, can sometimes get
into in our sessions with clients is getting stuck on our own map and
trying to "fix" the client. When we stay too much on our own
map, we start to mind-read. Instead of asking quality questions to flush
out more of what they are experiencing on their own map, we interpret
- from our own map - what a client must mean. The impact on rapport
and information gathering can be devastating. A session can quickly
turn from being a useful, potentially life-changing event, into a laborious
process of missed communication
We will review the basic "NLP outcome frame
questions" and the structured meta/programmer method (called "coached
outcome frame" by NLP Marin). The outcome frame questions allow
the programmer to structure their session with a client. The meta person
can also use this list to help keep the programmer on track.
Using the coached outcome frame model, we will
refine our use of the outcome frame questions, to get higher quality
information from the client. We will work in groups of three. The programmer
gets to ask one question of the client, at which point the session pauses
while the meta asks the programmer a specific set of questions. The
questions are designed to help the programmer get off his/her own map
and refine their listening and thinking skills, so that the next question
asked of the client becomes a precision tool to uncover higher quality
information about the client's map and to help the programmer refine
their information gathering strategy.
After the first question, the meta will address
the following questions to the programmer. The programmer will answer
each question before being asked the next. (The last question is not
answered aloud, but is thought about and then the programmer asks the
client the next question.)
- Did the client answer your question?
- Did you get what you wanted?
- With which internal stance, attitude, emotional state,... did you
recieve the answer? How do you make yourself safe as programmer, in
- What did you learn?
- What do you respect more about the client's experience than they
do themselves, at this point?
- What do you want to know now?
- What question could you ask to get that information?
At this point, the programmer asks the next question
and the process is repeated. Each round will last 10-15 minutes at which
point each group will pause and discussion and and give feedback about
the process. Next, rotate roles and begin the next round. There should
be time for all three participants to occupy each role.
We will reconvene for about 10 minutes as a large
group to discuss briefly any insights from the process, before we break
into new groups for the "free practice" portion of the meeting.
Free Practice: (rest of time, approximately
1 1/2 hr)
Break into new (or same) groups of 3, work on your
stuff with others. As programmer, incorporate the insights gained from
the structured outcome frame exercise, to refine your questions and
Refer to the list of the NLP "outcome frame
questions" handed out earlier. The programmer can use these questions
to structure their session with the client. The meta person can also
use this list to help keep the programmer on track.
Suggest 1 person work for 45 mins, then either
switch with meta person or rotate new (programmer, client, meta) positions.
Leave 5-10 minutes at end of each round for meta feedback and tea break.