Book Cover

The subtitle for this chapter of Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, Switzler is ‘Advice for tough cases.’ Rather than enumerating the different tough cases (and the authors run through a bunch), I want to point out that this is a chapter I think I will return to in the future.  In my considered opinion nothing ever goes perfectly to plan. All conversations are a mixture of things that you’ve run through your head to prepare and parts that are off-script. Having a wide range of additional tactics for hard issues makes it easier to approach crucial conversations with confidence.

The basic layout for the meat of the chapter is to describe a hard scenario and then to provide an approach to using the process laid out in the earlier chapters just a little differently to reach a solution. This is an excellent small case study approach.

One of the most useful scenarios for me was the example of someone failing to live up to agreements. Many agile teams craft an agile charter or operating agreement that identifies the behavioral norms that people on the team will hold each other accountable for. In many circumstances, the agreed norms are broken and no holds each other accountable. It is not that it doesn’t matter or that they do not care, it is more often a function of not knowing how to have the conversation. Team members can fall into the pattern of waiting for someone else (like a boss) to say something. Agile levies an expectation that team members hold each other accountable.  Concepts of self-organization and self-management require that team members understand how to have crucial conversations without destroying relationships. Arguably teams that can not manage crucial conversations can’t be agile. 

I see the scenarios in the chapter as a reference manual for using the processes laid out in the first nine chapters. Teams that read the book as a book club or lunch and learn program could use this chapter as a tool for roleplaying.   

We will finish the content of the Crucial Conversations next week and then briefly wrap the re-read up the following week.  The four books we are trying to narrow down are:

  • Tame Your Workflow (Tendon and Doiron)
  • Great Big Agile (Dalton) 
  • Fixing Your Scrum (Ripley and Miller)
  • The Lean Startup (Ries)

Vote Now!

Of the four, I have interviewed the authors of three of the books recently. Use the links below to listen if you need more information to make your selection. The poll to pick the next book will continue until May 8th. 

Interviews with 5 of the 6 authors

SPaMCAST 587 – Fixing Your Scrum, An Interview with Todd Miller @todd_miller11 and Ryan Ripley @ryanripley #Scrum @Agile

Direct Download: http://bit.ly/32jiGk9

Web and Show Notes: http://bit.ly/2SS15wr

Apple Podcast : https://apple.co/39yJ8Jo

 

SPaMCAST 586 – Great Big Agile and The Agile Performance Holarchy, An Interview with Jeff Dalton

Direct Download: http://bit.ly/3bKecqQ

Web and Show Notes: http://bit.ly/2SvsxQy

Apple Podcasts: https://apple.co/3bZrLmm

 

SPaMCAST 563 – Tame Your Work Flow, Part 1, A Conversation with Daniel Doiron and Steve Tendon

Direct Playback: http://bit.ly/2k43Xru

Web Player and Show Notes: http://bit.ly/2lBtlFv

Apple Podcasts: https://apple.co/2lXGby0

 

SPaMCAST 564 – Tame Your Work Flow, Part 2, A Conversation with Daniel Doiron and Steve Tendon

Direct Playback: http://bit.ly/2kBkT9g

Web Player and Show Notes: http://bit.ly/2lWJZPS

Apple Podcasts: https://apple.co/2mqJq1h