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Modelling Perspectives


Practice Group Report

Our topic this month was “Modelling Perspectives”. This was inspired by Penny and James’s presentation at the recent Clean Conference, and indeed we used their ideas as the basis for our evening. We started with “I can’t see my legs from here” - a short role play of a client session, acted out by Nigel and Marian, with everyone drawing models of what was happening. This was followed by a small group discussion about what perspectives the drawings were from. Some people had drawn their models from their own perspective and some had drawn them from the client’s perspective. It was interesting to see all the different variations in the diagrams.

We listed different facilitator perspectives, which Penny and James modelled from David Grove:

  • observing from own viewpoint
  • imagining the client’s perspective
  • a bird’s eye view
  • moving around the client’s landscape
  • musing - figuring out the inherent logic

Then we split into groups of three (facilitator-client-observer) to practice our Clean Language skills, and to experiment with different facilitator perspectives. In our final discussion, the following points were made:

  • I was more aware of the landscape, the placing of symbols and the eye-line view. When the client went inside, I wondered what that would be like.
  • I was trying to put myself in the client’s shoes and this made the metaphor very powerful and this seemed dangerous, and at odds with ‘staying out’ of the client landscape. (We all agreed that ‘second-positioning’ or ‘putting oneself in the client’s shoes’ is not what we are aiming to do, but it is about seeing the model from the’s viewpoint.)
  • The landscape was in front of me and when I wondered what it would be like from the client’s perspective I turned my head to see. This informed my questions. Then I went to the bird’s eye view, which allowed me to see that the effects may go further, which i checked out with further questions.
  • When there were two perceivers I asked about each one.
  • It slowed me right down. I was able to notice the number of hand movements in a gesture.
  • The client’s language determined which perspective I took.
  • As a client, the questions allowed me to look at things in a different way.
  • It brought different things into focus.

A special thank you to Penny and James for sharing their valuable ideas about ‘Modelling Perspectives’. 

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay 

About Marian Way

Marian Way's avatar

A highly skilled facilitator and trainer, Marian, who founded Clean Learning in 2001, has developed and delivered training across the world. She is the author of Clean Approaches for Coaches, co-author, with James Lawley, of Insights in Space and co-author, with Caitlin Walker, of So you want to be… #DramaFree.

Marian is an expert Clean facilitator, an adept modeller, a programme writer and an inspirational trainer. She has a natural ability to model existing structures, find the connections between them and design new ways for people to learn. Marian was a leading innovator within the Weight Watchers organisation, which included developing the “points” strategy, a local idea that went on to become a global innovation. She is a director of both Clean Learning and Training Attention CIC, world leaders in clean applications for corporate, educational and community development. She designs our programmes and workbooks, leads workshops and teaches on all our courses. She’s trained people in Great Britain, Russia, Sweden, Germany, Australia, Japan and the USA. Marian is also a recognised Clean Assessor.

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