Gripe, Grope and Grasp

I learned this methodology from a friend of mine, Don Fowke.  The idea is very simple and is great model for consulting about an issue a group is facing.  First we listen to members of the group gripe individually and in groups and then present what we found to the group. 

The group and the consultants then grope for solutions.  This is an important stage and we encourage people to become creative and not to put constraints on their thinking.   We are looking for rapids results that will yield results quickly. 

When the groping is done, we grasp at a solution to deal with the issue. 

This stage then leads to an action plan which will produce rapid results.  As the solutions are implemented the group regularly evaluates progress and changes course if results are not achieved.

  1. Jim Reply

    I loved Vincent’s poetic comment.
    The thing that is most amazing about Gripe, Grope and Grasp is that I remember it after 16 years. I believe I remember it because it was three items and it rhymed.
    I learned somewhere that we can only keep three to seven things in our conscious mind at any one time. If we want something to be accessible it should be between three and seven things. That is why telephone number are seven digit. If we go beyond seven then we regroup them into area code, exchange and number to remember them.
    The reason I remember this because at the time of three G’s I was trying to package my management consulting practice and Tom Stark said to me there is a excellent example of packaging and marketing.
    I have always thought my Cloud Theory of strategic planning was really and people always like it. (See http://pxltd.typepad.com/project_x_discussions/2006/06/the_cloud_theor.html ) However I never see it referred to so it has not reached its tipping point. I guess it is also not expressed simply enough or packaged the right way. I still have not learned the lesson that Tom tried to teach me.

  2. Vincent McBurney Reply

    Shouldn’t that be Gripe, Group, Grope and Grasp. Or better yet: Grog, Grip, Group, Grope and Grasp. Better griping if you get them smashed first.
    I like it. A lot of people leave jobs without having the chance to tell anyone what they didn’t like about the job that made them want to leave. A lot of projects go off the rails and everyone knew what was wrong except the key decision makers!

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