In this session, we will use a process created by the Young President’s Organization, the premiere global leadership organization for more than 27,000 chief executives in 130 countries, to help you think about, sort through, improve or implement an important project or initiative.

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Overview: Moderator may read this verbatim

Welcome to the BMe Vanguard Consulting firm with over 250 years of active problem-solving experience, a host of networks, knowledge and experiences spanning the globe. Each person here is incredibly accomplished and dedicated to making the world a better place.

Roles: This process is adopted from the Young Presidents Organization, a 27,000-member network of CEOs in 130 countries. There are 3 roles in this process. I am serving as Moderator. My role has 3 parts. Firstly, I will make sure that we understand the rules of the process, 2nd I will make sure that we stay on time, 3rd and I will take notes of key obstacles and insights that arise over the course of the discussion so that I may help us all facilitate the final discussion. The next role is Presenter. They present one very specific challenge that we will help them resolve. The final role is Adviser. They listen, probe, think, expose gaps, reveal opportunities and propose solutions, resources, and suggestions.

Process: Presenter has 5-10 minutes to describe the challenge to Advisers. Advisers then ask clarifying questions for 5 minutes and more probing and thought-provoking questions for 10 minutes. Once Advisers have a detailed sense of the situation, they spend 15-25 minutes brainstorming solutions, surfacing other organizations doing the same thing, best practices, etc. The Presenter can only listen and take notes. Then Presenter gets 5-10 minutes to say what they heard and what resonated. The whole group then discusses whether the proposed solutions will work in this context and what it might take to make any of them work. The group considers next steps, timing, likely partners and resources to which they can connect the Presenter. In the final 5 minutes the group reflects on what they learned from the process. [End Verbatim]

Step-by-Step Guidance:

  1. Aspire (5-10 Minutes): State name and organization. Using Persuasion Formula, you learned (skip the Hook), state a specific Question you need help with “How do I…”, “What should I…”, etc. Then explain the context, related issues and opportunities. State a To-Be-Sure if there is one but there isn’t always. Finally, restate the question to conclude.
  2. Clarify (5 Minutes): Advisers ask simple yes/no questions that can be answered in a few words to clarify the facts.
  3. Probe (10 Minutes): Advisers ask more open-ended thought-provoking questions to expand Presenter’s thinking “Why…”, “What do you think of…”, “What did you mean by…” Presenter answers but there’s no discussion yet.
  4. Consider (15-25 Minutes): Advisers now ignore Presenter and share their perspectives and brainstorm solutions based on questions such as: What did we think of the question presented? What has the Presenter not considered? What gaps or challenges haven’t been examined? What must be resolved before addressing the larger issue? What are potential solutions? What organizations and people are doing the same thing? Where specific resources are out there? What do we specifically propose Presenter do to achieve their aspiration?
  5. Reflect (10 Minutes): Presenter shares what they heard, what resonated, proposal reactions and likely next steps.
  6. Elevate (20 Minutes): Moderator facilitates a wide-open conversation about the issue by asking “What is the essential to solving this problem” or telling teammates to complete the sentence “You can’t solve this problem without…” Presenter can and should answer whether they believe proposed solutions will work in their context. Team should discuss what changes to proposals may need to be made for them to work.
  7. Learn (5 Minutes): Team members answer, “What did you learn from this process if anything?”

Why: One of the benefits of Peer Consulting is it shows how we can make things better together. It allows us to appreciate the intelligence and ambition in our midst and lets you gain respect for your peers who love and lead as hard as you do.