60 Chapters
Medium 9781599964805

128—Measuring a Problem

TRC Interactive HRD Press, Inc. PDF


• Make copies of Handout 1 for each participant.

• You may want to make copies of the Breakdown of Issues in Part II to give to the

participants at the end of the session.

• Provide pencils for participants to complete the exercise.

• Have whiteboards or flipcharts and markers available for participants to

summarize Part II.

• The room should be flexible enough for separate small group discussions.


• Because of the nature of this exercise and the controversy surrounding many of

its issues, you may want to use a small-group approach. This method often helps overzealous and experienced managers already set in their ways to see other points of view. It also provides the opportunity for all participants to share their ideas and perceptions of similar problems.

• Divide participants into small groups of equal size, and distribute the handout.

• Read or summarize the following instructions:

In this exercise, you’re given a list of words typically used to describe employee behavior. In Part I, each group is to decide whether these behaviors are indeed problems and if they’re measured objectively or subjectively.

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Medium 9781599962039

112—What are we doing?

TRC Interactive HRD Press, Inc. PDF

• Teams should be spaced throughout the room and individuals seated according

to the following diagram:









• Give every team member a set of instructions, an envelope containing five

cards, a pencil, and plain writing paper. Each of the five cards within the envelope is to bear a different symbol. (Symbols are provided for you on handouts.)

• Give the Leader of the group a separate set of instructions that explain the

object of the game. These instructions are intentionally written in a wordy and ambiguous style. Do not attempt to change the wording. It is also important that no one else receives this information.

• Have participants read over their instructions. Then read or paraphrase the

following information for all teams:

Each group composes an organization with a Leader, a Manager, and three employees. The Leader has just received instructions about a proposed project.

In order to complete the project and because of the location of each position within the organization, the Leader, Manager, and Employees may only communicate in writing. Talking is not allowed. You may convey information only to those people indicated on your instructions and only via written notes.

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125—You Could Do this Job in Your Sleep

TRC Interactive HRD Press, Inc. PDF


• Make copies of the appropriate case study for each participant.

• Have a whiteboard or flipchart and markers available for group summaries of

the discussion.

• The room should be flexible enough for small group discussion.


• Divide the participants into small groups that are roughly equal in size.

Distribute the appropriate case study, and ask them to read it.

• At this point, you can take a couple of directions. In one approach, you might

ask participants to read the case study and, using the questions as a guide, come up with all the positive and negative aspects of the training program directed by Jeff Dolan. Some examples of these aspects might be:

Positive Aspects

− Product was demonstrated.

− Trainee was allowed to go through the process while being observed, etc.

Negative Aspects

− Trainee was not asked for feedback about what was happening.

− Trainee was put on his or her own too rapidly.

− No backup was provided in the event there was a problem.

− Consideration was not shown for the fears felt by new employees.

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118—Making the Meeting Meaningful

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118 – Making the Meeting Meaningful


Purpose/Objectives: This exercise demonstrates how a supervisor or manager can “open up” a problem-solving session by promoting an atmosphere of open thinking, sharing ideas, and an in-depth analysis of those ideas. A task force consisting of five to seven participants is assigned to select what day to use for a ninth floating holiday in their company.

A leader is chosen, and the emphasis of the exercise is on how well he/she carried out this assignment. The leader and the remaining class participants receive guidelines on how to conduct the meeting. If the leader fails to follow the guidelines, the observers note the action. Changing leaders several times throughout the meeting gives others a chance to try out their skills.

Leaders can learn when their meeting does not “stay on track,” and the rest of the participants can compare different styles of leadership.

Type: Simulation

Time Required: 70 to 90 minutes

Group Size: Unlimited but works best with groups of 15 or fewer

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142—Work Pressures

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142 – Work Pressures


Purpose/Objectives: Managers and supervisors must be able to recognize the causes of stress and its effects on performance and productivity. In this exercise, participants are asked to identify what things or activities on the job are stressful. Then, after dividing into two groups, the first group is asked to identify some psychological reactions to these stress factors, and the second group to identify some of the physical effects that develop from continued exposure to these stress factors. Then participants use a questionnaire to analyze their own work environments. This application exercise highlights areas of stress in participants’ jobs and how to minimize that stress. A bonus of this exercise is a greater appreciation of how stress affects others.

Type: Application

Time Required: 90 minutes

Group Size: 10 to 20

Use this Session Builder as: • A reinforcement exercise to illustrate key points on stress in the work environment.

• An application exercise to focus on each participant’s

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