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  1. #1
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Default Fe / Ti users: how can Te users best comment on your ideas or plans?

    Looking for advice!

    Here's a scenario: you, Fe/Ti or Ti/Fe person, are leading a work meeting today. You have decided that you need the first phase of all personnel evaluations completed by 6 Jan 2011. Head office gave you that date, and you didn't see a problem with it at first; so you agreed and now need to communicate it down the food chain.

    In the meeting, when you announce the date, the first person to respond says, "You want people to have these evaluations done for their staff by that date? The financials won't be completed by then so there's no data ready to show how well they performed in 2010. The company master plan hasn't yet been updated, so there are no goals for 2011 to use to set new goals or performance targets. Three of the staff are already away for Christmas and won't be back until 3 Jan 2011. They then only have 3 days to do their appraisals."

    So, to you as the leader, how do you feel when you are thus confronted? Is it embarrassing? Does it cause you to withdraw, go silent, go blank? Because, as soon as the words are spoken in the meeting, you know that all of the above is true, and you didn't think of that stuff or consult anyone to see if the date would be workable first ... but your reaction is to just tell everyone they have to get them done regardless of the logical impediments to the process.

    How can a strong Te user best bring information to your attention in a meeting to help you stay open to hear it? Amend the plan accordingly? Te users can blurt out why things won't work ... so how can they say it in a way that gets more people on board?
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  2. #2
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    I'm sorry what is the problem? If the date is unworkable, I don't mind being told that fact. My bigger problem would be how to communicate back to the head office that what I agreed on needs to change.

  3. #3
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    ^ exactly ... the reaction in this scenario was to just tell everyone they have to get them done regardless of the logical impediments to the process. Is the problem with how Te raised the points? If so, how to say the above better, so it will be received in a less defensive manner.
    "Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "When people see some things as beautiful,
    other things become ugly.
    When people see some things as good,
    other things become bad."
    Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

  4. #4
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    No, there was nothing wrong with how that was said. The problem would come in if someone objected but didn't give a practical reason. Probably their issue is deciding how to approach the leadership to let them know. Middle management sucks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeaceBaby View Post
    ^ exactly ... the reaction in this scenario was to just tell everyone they have to get them done regardless of the logical impediments to the process. Is the problem with how Te raised the points? If so, how to say the above better, so it will be received in a less defensive manner.
    Perhaps it was how it was said. Te can sound condescending (I've read Te-users remark on this themselves).

  6. #6
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    I don't see the problem. There's nothing you have to do other than say why something won't work.

    Again, the perception that Ti users safeguard their ideas or have some sort of personal identity tied up in them is one I, and any other Ti user I have seen comment on it, don't share, and I'm not sure where it is coming from.



  7. #7
    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    Again, the perception that Ti users safeguard their ideas or have some sort of personal identity tied up in them is one I, and any other Ti user I have seen comment on it, don't share, and I'm not sure where it is coming from.
    Big +1

    I don't see anything wrong with this as it's stated. If there was a problem with it, perhaps there are underlying personality/historical conflicts or tone of voice/body language made it come across inappropriately. The words and rationale seem fine (assuming it actually is unworkable and not just annoying).

    Edit: it is remarkably blunt, though. It could definitely use some smoothing out. It is also very definitive for what seems to be an opinion, and doesn't leave room for conflicting opinions or alternatives (as mentioned, a very rough draft given the known information could be done in three days, right?). salome has a point that it has the vibe of something a boss would say, not an employee - the tone I'm imagining in my head borders on disrespect.
    -end of thread-

  8. #8
    meh Salomé's Avatar
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    I see a problem. And I don't think it has anything to do with functions. You (or whoever) weren't asked for feedback so you were challenging his authority and gave him no opportunity to save face in front of his staff. Really, his only choice was to push back aggressively. Is it really impossible to complete the first phase of the evaluations without all the supporting data?
    Couldn't you just have stressed that whilst it would be possible to complete a draft , the quality would be compromised <for the reasons given>, and did he think that would be acceptable?
    That way you are both informing and offering a choice.
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  9. #9
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    I'm sorry what is the problem? If the date is unworkable, I don't mind being told that fact. My bigger problem would be how to communicate back to the head office that what I agreed on needs to change.
    Same here.

    I mean, the problem isn't my fault, it's the upper management should have already known that the stats would not have been available before committing to a date.

    I would simply relay the information, then offer alternatives, such as (1) move the date to a more realistic one or (2) keep the date but retain the limitations of the information I can realistically provide. [Perhaps the three employee assessments could be done within the three-day time, if there is enough cause; but there's no way I can get financial figures back to provide quantitative assessment of employee performance, that boundary seems set in stone.]

    I would try to keep the missive as reasonable as possible and not attach blame (even if I personally felt like it was their fault and a sign of incompetence); I'd focus on the goal that needed to be met and offer a few potential solutions with an assessment of the value/limitations of each.

    ^ exactly ... the reaction in this scenario was to just tell everyone they have to get them done regardless of the logical impediments to the process. Is the problem with how Te raised the points?
    Actually, the responses sounds a helluvamore like a Te response, not a Ti response. Ti will flex to the inherent essence of the situation and be true to its structure (and in this cases there are boundaries that can't change); Te tends to lop, stretch, cut, and whatever else.

    Put another way, to Ti, the essence is immutable; to Te, the goal is immutable.

    If a Ti person responded this way, then I would say it was more a 'stress reaction" because they always feel like they have to be right and in control or that other people (bosses) will be displeased with them, and they don't have the social skills and self-confidence necessary to actually work the issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by salome
    You (or whoever) weren't asked for feedback so you were challenging his authority and gave him no opportunity to save face in front of his staff. Really, his only choice was to push back aggressively.
    Another good observation, it would be dependent on the actual context and tone of the exchange, but it's something to consider. I think in a typical hands-on workplace environment, where people have to get themselves dirty with the actual work, people are far more blunt and let things like that roll off their backs; but challenging someone in a group without allowing them room to save face / an escape hatch of sorts can lead to a power play.

    I don't think I'd just label this as feedback, however; this was essential information that impacted the viability of the assignment being given. I don't see how someone could have avoided saying it; it would just need to be said in a way that did not put the boss on the defensive / trigger a power play.
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  10. #10
    Plumage and Moult proteanmix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salomé View Post
    I see a problem. And I don't think it has anything to do with functions. You (or whoever) weren't asked for feedback so you were challenging his authority and gave him no opportunity to save face in front of his staff. Really, his only choice was to push back aggressively. Is it really impossible to complete the first phase of the evaluations without all the supporting data?
    Couldn't you just have stressed that whilst it would be possible to complete a draft , the quality would be compromised <for the reasons given>, and did he think that would be acceptable?
    That way you are both informing and offering a choice.
    Lightening has struck twice, I find myself agreeing.

    I don't see a problem with the OP saying what s/he said, and having been in so many similar work situations, it's difficult but not impossible. There will be a lot of griping but it can get done. The manager's main issue is rallying the troops and removing as many obstacles from getting this done as possible and putting caveats on the quality of the work to upper management.

    Once the edict came down, I suppose I see this as more of a office politics thing than anything else. How to move people and get them to do? If the middle manager's work relationships are strong and solid enough people will come through, if not the person will get pushback, stonewalling, and foot dragging. Those reactions may be totally justified as well, but what the ultimate purpose. Move people into the agile project management frame, make it a combined effort, lead by example, rearrange priorities and deadlines that can be moved, assure people things will return to "normal" as soon as this is completed, and see if upper management can be flexible towards other deadlines so this can get done.

    Having seen objections like that raised in many a meeting, it's typically from a person who feels like they weren't properly consulted and their first reaction is to freak and not move into problem-solving mode. Not that the objections aren't legit, but if the deadline is totally non-negotiable then it just needs to get done.
    Relationships have normal ebbs and flows. They do not automatically get better and better when the participants learn more and more about each other. Instead, the participants have to work through the tensions of the relationship (the dialectic) while they learn and group themselves and a parties in a relationships. At times the relationships is very open and sharing. Other time, one or both parties to the relationship need their space, or have other concerns, and the relationship is less open. The theory posits that these cycles occur throughout the life of the relationship as the persons try to balance their needs for privacy and open relationship.
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