Here is a simple model of reflective practice that sequences questions to debrief learning teams. I invite you to practice it individually or with your team to go a little deeper and more productively into distilling the learning from an experience or project. Cultivating dialogue at work is this simple!
“Let’s look back at what we did in this work, at our experience. Let’s take a few minutes to reflect on what we just did.”
What do you remember from our conversation? • What specific words, phrases and images still linger in your mind? • What topics were covered? • What information stood out for you? • What are some of the things we did first? • What words or phrases did you hear throughout the work we did?
Where were you intrigued or excited by what you heard? • Where did you turn off? • What were low points? • Where did we struggle most? • Where did you feel most challenged? • Where was the work most alive? • At what point was it most sobering? • How did you feel at the end of the work? • What were high points of the work for you?
What did you learn from the work? • What was the work really about? • What were some of the key points made? • How did it challenge or affirm the way we work? • If you were to give this work a new title, what would it be? • What was the turning point in the work? • What new vantage point has this work (if any) given us?
Whose work would be most affected by what we have learned? • What could we do to bring some of the learning into the day-to-day work of our department? • What would be involved? • What would be the first steps? • Who will work on them? • What’s the next step in implementing what we saw today?
This work has been a significant step in our journey.”
What could you learn when you take the time to reflect on your experience at work?
Adriano understands how to increase your returns on leadership. He works with professionals in world-class organizations that include Philip Morris, Microsoft, the World Bank, Johns Hopkins University, the US Marine Corps, the State Department and NASA. A skilled experiential educator with corporate leadership experience, he is the Founder & Principal Consultant of ParticipAction Consulting, Inc., a firm committed to help clients redefine change, collaboration and power in their organizations. He co-authored "Teachable Moments of Leadership" with Jill Hufnagel in 2016, on a learning methodology that gets results by going from PowerPoint to …powerful!