Triggers, Ripples and Rules

A play called “Rules For Living” at the National Theatre made us howl with recognition! Might the frustrations that “block us” with family members also crop up in leadership teams? When you know what triggers a stuck conversation how can the team get free, and back to the real work?

The play shows us how the characters in a family behave by certain unconscious rules, and one person’s pattern triggers the next to create madness in the room. In a play this can be quite funny but in real life wouldn’t it drive you mad?

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You might have noticed that the challenge in many teams is not the frustration itself, but the inability to speak openly about it without making it worse. A good facilitator will encourage team members to be curious about how they trigger one another, and how they can also release each other, and once the ripple effect is named and understood, you can all choose in countless small ways to be more in the “good ripples”.

Naming without blaming seems to be the key.