The “Method lll”

Method III ‘No-Lose’ Problem Solving
print this out – and ‘propagate’ it


Especially to be better cooperatively-prepared,
copy this greatly-neglected
but ‘Win-Win-Win’
Cooperative Problem Solving Method III :-

‘Method III’
Friendly First-Resort ‘No-Lose’ Problem Solving :

[Those who shun this
(so-far voluntarily-honourable)
foundational progress

must remain enslaved to Competitive Adversary Law processes
and thereunder must buy, turn to, and interminably await,

the costly and stultifyingly-slower ‘wheels’
of Adversary ‘cold-war’ stand-offs, solicitors and Law Courts] .


{Method I the ‘bosses’ usually win; Method II the ‘underlings’ usually win}.

(With acknowledgement to Dr Thomas Gordon in
Leader Effectiveness Training
& other exponents e.g. Robert Bolton in People Skills).

Introduction: Please read through every part of the following lines
before attempting to judge,
or even think about, this methodology.

The guidance lines are of primary and ‘deal-breaking’ necessity.

Guidance (Rule) #1:  No-one can come with any competitive
or comparative advantage.

Each comes ’empty-handed’ or with a ‘blank slate’.
Each participates equally, patiently,

To allow improvement by suggestion, participants might agree to
a penultimate round,
so that any input may be clarified/& unanimously-approved;
before confirming every input “in ink” by the final round.  

Guidance #2:  Move in one direction around the round-table;
at each step many patient rounds will usually give much

better results than merely one, two or three hurried rounds.
Each person gets equal
non-transferrable time per round. 

Guidance #3:  Silence is absolutely ‘Golden’,
whilst each individual may be descending
deeper and deeper inside theirself,
until they have finally arrived at, and formulated into words, their own
latest-recognised real and important need.  

Guidance #4:  Keep going around at each step,
until each participant has clearly stated
in their own words what their ultimate need is.
NB Everyone needs to include, at every step, advocacy-allowances for
Persons-Not-Present Who-May-Be-Affected By The Meeting’s Decisions
and Planning and Implementation.                                                  

Guidance #5: Remember: NO interrupting, interpreting, altering;
NO competing.
Let each finish verbatimly at first.
You might have agreed to penultimate rounds for
“clarification & unanimity”;
allowing and even controlledly-encouraging
a possible suggestipn for improvement to any individual’s input
or part thereof; before confirming all Inputs
to be in the end “signed by each participant in black ink”.


This Method III requires co-voluntary personal and unequivocal
otherwise, you must “go queue up to fight it out in Court”.  

To continue go to page 2 for the Five  Steps and some support sources.

page 2 of 2

Method III : every-one gets their real need recognized
and cooperatively planned to be met.

Step 1 :  Each participant submits wording or amendment to describe
the Problem-Situation 
at first needing to be written up on a whiteboard
or butcher’s-paper,
and needing agreement by each participant
before moving on.
Keep going around until what your scribe has written up on the whiteboard
is perfectly approved
by each participant in a penultimate “clarification” and “unanimity” round.

Step 2:  Each participant suggests a solution
that they imagine might meet every-one’s need
in the above-written situation.  Once again no interrupting, no paraphrasing,
no ‘improving’ the speaker’s own wording.
[Insert a “clarification & unanimity” round, to be sure]..

Step 3: Go round and round, evaluating each ‘imagined’ solution;
e.g. by a show of  left-hand = 1 point, right-hand = 2 points,
both hands = 3 points, no hands = 0 points.
[Again maybe do a “clarification/unanimity” round]. 

Step 4: Select one of these shortlisted solutions;
OR cooperatively cobble-together an eclectic-solution
made up of the best features from any of the solutions submitted in Step 2.
[“Unanimity” round].

Step 5:  Go round and round again,
this time constructing firstly a Plan A,
that will best honour and ‘win-win-win’ meet each participant’s (and absentee’s)
most-important or vital real-need.

That settled, go round and round again,
constructing a Plan B “back-up plan”,
for what to do, for whatever could go wrong in Plan A ‘from the inside’,
or sabotage it ‘from the outside’.
Further back-up
 (contingency) plans should be decided upon.
And  don’t omit “unanimity” rounds, to be sure evry-one is ‘happy-so-far’   


Step 6:  Would now be the actual nitty-gritty action ‘on the ground’,
‘at the coal-face’ and ‘in amongst the grass-roots’ trialling and “live-actioning,:
the practical implementation of Plan A, and of its contingency back-up planning
where necessary;
[Dr Edward de Bono’s Six Action Shoes may prove useful for doing this Implementation.].

Remember: ‘Win-Win-Win-(Win-Win-Win-Win)’ is a good mindframe,
and from it can be included at the very least  the most-important real-needs
of other parties who are unable to be present
in the ‘No-Lose’ planning meeting itself. 

Those actually present and participating will little doubt settle satisfactorily
their own needs and how best to satisfy them,
but those present need also to include adequate advocacy
for all absentees’ needs and hows,
some of which at least might be quite different from the ‘present’ members’.