Please or Register to create posts and topics.

Frame control: Sidestepping/Resetting

Hello guys,

I think one very powerful technique of frame control is Sidestepping. I prefer to call it Frame resetting. I haven't used it myself yet (which is why it's not in "proven") as I'm becoming aware of it. However I observed people using it. The situation is when you are presented with a disempowering, negative or insulting frame.

The common reaction is to address the frame or question it.

I'm saying: ignore the frame and create a new one. It goes back to the interview technique: "don't answer the question you are asked but the question you would have liked to been asked."

Virtual example

Person A: any disempowering frame at work.

You: Yeah, I think it's important to collaborate well together and that's why I propose such and such. Don't you think?

Basically, you go higher with a new frame (frame resetting). The power lies in the fact that this frame is designed to be of a higher level or quality so it is less likely to be challenged.

In this case, at work the frame is "production through collaboration". So if you propose to do something within this frame, anything that goes against this will be weaker. Yes, the person can defend with a philosopher frame. But then you can counter it with a "Philosophy is all good and all, what matter is what we are going to do now" (defense against philosopher's frame).

Of course, this is more powerful when you really intend to do the work at hand in the best fashion.

UPDATE: I see you call this "Pre-Framing Time Warp" in PU.

Yeah, and I'm thinking that "resetting" might be a better name than "time warp".

Maybe "pre-frame reset"?

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

You're the boss! 🙂

So I think that the frame resetting is actually a better default technique than frame ignoring at work.

So I would change the default frame techniques at work by order of preference to:

  1. Frame resetting: allows to move in a productive direction without confrontation
  2. Philosopher's frame: when people are being stupid/mean and one can think of a higher answer
  3. Mirror technique: when people are being too stupid and one is too tired or taken by surprise to find a better answer

Is frame negotiation a separate technique or a mindset? Because it is not listed in the lessons on Frame Control (I and II). I'm trying to put it at the correct level of classification. This is what my supervisors are doing a lot and I don't like it so much when they're using it on me because I find it manipulative instead of being direct and respectful.

It feels like the person is thinking: "How can I get this person to do what I want?" instead of "How can I explain to this person that this is the best/right thing to do?"

I find it to be actually confrontational, in the passive-aggressive range. I mean: how I experienced it from my supervisors, who are from an indirect communication culture. So they think it's smart and all.

Example:

Supervisor enters the room while I'm talking to a peer and balance her weight around: "so he can go home". Then proceeds to asks me a "question", actually an order disguised as a question:

Her: is everything fine with patients? (pre-framing)

Me: Yes

Her: Because I heard this about this patient. Has he drunk enough? (order = check how much he drank)

Me: I am currently busy with another patient so I don't know yet

Basically she came in to impose her leadership. I followed her and did my job. But that made me dislike her even more. Instead of explaining to me what she wants, she tries to "lead me" to do what she wants. And to me this is condescending. My ego, I know. This is my perception anyway.

John, have you thought about either asking her to be more direct, or to draw her out?

For example:

Her: is everything fine with patients?
You: As far as I know, yes. Do you want me to check on him?

Or:

Why, do you want me to check on him?

Or:

Are you asking me to check on him?

She'd reply, glad that you got it (keep in mind that it's a good thing to move towards other people):

Her: Yes, I heard that...

And:

You: OK, cool, you can just tell me when you heard something or you want me to do something (smile slightly to take the edge off, as if to say "I know where you're coming from, but just speak up, I can take it)

She might bite and understand that more directness is appreciated.


P.S.: I wouldn't call this a case of frame negotiation, but discussing labels is not the most important thing.
And I changed the name from "time-warp" to "pre-frame resetting" (thanks for the new more intuitive name John. "Time warp", what the F was I thinking LOL :D)

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

John, have you thought about either asking her to be more direct, or to draw her out?

This is a very interesting thread actually.
We could add this to assertiveness techniques at work.
Because, at work, as we have discussed, we cannot use emotions as much as it seems less professional.
What we can do is frame things directly on how it impacts the business outcome and work objectives.

In this case, drawing her out and asking her directly can get to the bottom of working things out faster.
It's the hospital setting in this case with lots of competing tasks for attention.
So it's highly justifiable to request for efficient talk.

Maybe to take the edge off by making it less personal, it can be framed from making things more efficient

You: (smile slightly) OK, cool, you can just tell me when you heard something.
It would help us serve the patients faster.

Would this work?

Quote from Matthew Whitewood on February 23, 2021, 5:29 pm

You: (smile slightly) OK, cool, you can just tell me when you heard something.
It would help us serve the patients faster.

Would this work?

It could yes, but it's a politcal risk depending on the receiver.

The risk is that such a sentence is not very power-protective.

So a very low-ego, low-power, and/or very antifragile and bottom-line oriented person might think "that's true, let's do that from now on" or "OK, I get it he prefers more direct, I'll do that".

But other people, and probably the majority of people, might think "oh what, is he calling the shots now? Telling me how to care for the patients and what's more effective for me as a boss?".

Just a little tweak can make it more protective though and more politically smart though:

It can help us go faster

That softens the power blow.
And without getting into the "serving the patient", it seems less of a power move as it's more about you two, than "how to run the hospital".

THE POWER DYNAMICS OF LIFE

I can imagine an ego-less alien reading this website and think "wow, what a silly species these humans, why not just talking direct, everything would be so much more effective".

But in this species that we are, if you want to be effective and change things for the better, sometimes you must go the power-protective way, and take the slightly longer road, as the shorter one is not really shorter, but just lose-lose ineffective.

Matthew Whitewood has reacted to this post.
Matthew Whitewood
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?
Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on February 23, 2021, 5:45 pm

THE POWER DYNAMICS OF LIFE

I can imagine an ego-less alien reading this website and think "wow, what a silly species these humans, why not just talking direct, everything would be so much more effective".

But in this species that we are, if you want to be effective and change things for the better, sometimes you must go the power-protective way, and take the slightly longer road, as the shorter one is not really shorter, but just lose-lose ineffective.

haha interesting humours imagination about an "ego-less alien", I guess a bit of sarcasm in there? 🙂 I do also imagine that an alien doesnt deal with ego, and whould have more humility in the toughts about humans. Beacuse it sounded more thoughts coming from pride, one of the sins of the ego.

Off topic if you guys are intrested to know more about how the ego works, google or look up at wikipedia (not the best source, I know) - "seven deadly sins". Those seven deadly sins are related to traits of the ego. Good to know about as those traits can be obvious in other for us but harder to detect in ourselves sometimes. Increasing the self-awareness about the ego in generell, could be helpful to become more high quality 🙂

Otherwise then that, grateful for learning more about power dynamics of life in this reality 🙂

Processing...