Desert Highway
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Sustaining the Journey

Things to Consider When Seeking Advice

Authored By:

Thinking Collaborative

Date:

February 16, 2015

One of the Support Functions of Cognitive CoachingSM and the Leadership Hats of Adaptive Schools is Consulting. Thinking Collaborative advocates that consulting should be done with an intention to promote self-directedness in individuals and groups.



The authors of a recent article, “The Art of Giving and Receiving Advice,” provide tips for five stages of advising for both the Seeker of Advice and the Giver of Advice. This week we explore the guidelines they offer for the Seeker of Advice.



Stage 1 Finding the Right Fit

Before seeking advice, consider a sound group of people where you might seek advice over time
Decide specifically on what advice you are seeking
Choose one or more advisor that aligns with your current needs


Stage 2 Developing a Shared Understanding

Provide information about the issues, but don’t provide too much information
Be open to discussing uncomfortable aspects of the issue


Stage 3 Crafting Alternatives

Actively engage in dialogue about alternatives
Ask open ended and specific questions to be sure you understand the advice clearly


Stage 4 Converging on a Decision

Consider a second or third opinion
Develop your own revised ideas that are comfortable for you and your style and knowledge


Stage 5 Putting Advice into Action

Be attentive to changes in the environment and be willing to make midcourse corrections
Reflect and follow up with additional advice, if needed


How do these guidelines fit with your values and beliefs about seeking advice? When have you practiced these? Which ones might be helpful in a situation in the coming weeks where you might seek advice?



Gavin, D & Margolis, J. (2015). The Art of Giving and Receiving Advice. Harvard Business Review, p. 60-71.

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