RE: [ba-ohs-talk] IBIS question
Hi Gil, (01)
This is a great question! In the Dialog Mapping workshop, once we've
gotten the basics of exploring a single Question, its Ideas, and their
Arguments, then we get into the real power of IBIS, which is in supporting
the process of finding the best Questions! (02)
In my experience, the question that a group starts with is rarely the one
the has the power in creating a solution. Indeed, finding the "hidden
questions" is probably the most important of the advanced skills that an
IBIS facilitator has to master in order to be really effective with groups.
Also, just opening questions up (so that they don't contain assumptions
and possible answers) is a critical skill. Refining the Questions is
standard part of working with IBIS. (03)
In your example, the shift might be reframing "How to make the elevators go
faster?" to "How to make people more comfortable with the elevator system?"
or "How should we address people's complaints about the elevator?" (04)
But its important to avoid the pitfall of looking for the "right" question,
or the "real issue", or anything that smacks of a single focus. Wicked
problems have at least as many "central questions" as they do stakeholders.
Any real world problem has at least a few questions that need to be
address in concert, and sometimes there are literally hundreds of
questions, all of which are distinct and important. That's why an IBIS
shared display is so powerful (in meetings or on-line) -- it allows the
group to see and entertain a network of inter-related questions, without
having to lock down on one and "solve" it exclusive of the others. So in
Dialog Mapping we would want to keep both of the above Questions in the
display, and dance between them. (05)
At 11:07 AM 1/29/02 +0100, Gil Regev wrote:
>There's another point that I didn't see addressed in this discussion.
>The point is to ask whether the problem formulation cannot be changed.
>Many times by changing the problem formulation we get better
>alternatives. Consider the following story proposed by Jean-Louis Le
>Moigne in "Modélisation des systèmes complexes":
>A company moved its offices into a highrise where its departments got
>scattered in several floors. The employees began to complain about the
>elevators being too slow. A costly projet was started to improve the
>response rate and speed of the elevators using complicated operational
>research methods. While this project was going on someone had the idea
>of placing mirrors next to the elevators and the employees stopped
>complaining about the elevators.
>This means that we can see the problem as being "the elevators are too
>slow" and start an IBIS discussion on how to get better elevators or we
>can see the problem as "Employees don't want to waste their time in
>front of the elevator." The range of ideas that can be generated for the
>second formulation may include getting employees to do interesting
>things while waiting for the elevators. These things can be of interest
>for the employees only, as in the case of the mirrors, or they can be of
>interest for both the employees and the company, writing suggestions for
>improvement for example.
>To go back to Johannes' example, instead of asking how to best solve the
>problem of providing customers with a faster product. We can ask why do
>customers request a faster product. If they want to get some job done
>faster, then what about the process they are using? If we changed the
>process, it may have more impact on their efficiency than having a
>faster product and we may not even have to make the complex choices
>defined in Johaness' example. We will have other complex choices to make
>when designing the process, though.
>Is this relevant to the discussion? How would you do this in IBIS?
>[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of Jeff Conklin
>Sent: mardi, 29. janvier 2002 07:28
>Subject: Re: [ba-ohs-talk] IBIS question
Dr. Jeff Conklin <email@example.com>
CogNexus Institute ... Collaborative Display, Collective Intelligence
http://cognexus.org Phone/Fax: 410-798-4495
304 Arbutus Dr., Edgewater, MD 21037 USA (08)