My coaching client asked me to come in for a couple of hours to facilitate a meeting. A major strike was about to be called that could have had serious consequences for the company and the public.
I suggested everybody share their best thinking about the situation and the possibilities for action while everyone else just listened. Then we went round again for people to identify common ground, clarify any assumptions and to decide what to do next. This led to involving more people with more detailed knowledge of the situation and the legitimate grievances of the staff. Everybody contributed and everybody listened so we genuinely created a Thinking Environment.
We then repeated the process, more than once over the rest of the day, and finally came up with a strategy that all supported and thought would work. Some time later, I learned that it had worked.
As we travelled down in the lift together my client said, “That was marvellous, charge me what you like!”