Change SIG - 06/23/2017

06/23/2017 8:30 AM | Mary Charles Blakebrough (Administrator)

Strategic Problem-solving with Harvard's "Gossip Triads"

The “Gossip Triad" method* has been used for a number of years by the Harvard School of Government in their leadership programs. It is an experience that you, as a consultant, can use in any program where there is a mix of people from different units or areas (or from different organizations). Participants are asked to send in pre-work, briefly describing a challenge from their workplace. They will use this challenge to examine in the triads, so confidentiality is a given.

Jane Tucker heard about the method this year from a colleague from the Southwest, who had seen it work,and she has now used it several times – in a national program with people from various institutions and in a single organization in Hawaii with people from different units. It is simple, intense and gives everyone a chance to be the focus of attention for personalized questioning and coaching that can give the recipient new perspectives. (Note: at the School of Government, each person normally gets 1-1.5 hour’s consultation. As demonstrated and used recently, each person will get about 20 minutes and it has worked!)

At the moment, Tucker is planning to substitute a version of “Gossip Triads” in every program where she formerly had people work in small groups to practice the case of one person in the group. Using “Gossip” Triads, everyone in the group can get advice and counsel about their challenge issue. She’s excited to share this with members of the SIG!

*Attributed to Vantage Point Consulting Pty, Ltd; Directors: Maxine Fern, BA, M.ED and Michael Johnstone, Ph.D.

Jane Tucker has over thirty years of experience in higher education in both the administrative and teaching areas.  She taught negotiation skills classes in the Fuqua School of Business at Duke and currently teaches negotiations and leadership to scientists through grants to COACh from the National Science Foundation and Department of Energy.  She also taught with the Center for Creative Leadership (, an internationally recognized leadership research organization where she worked with leaders from corporations and not-for-profits in the Looking Glass program.

Dr. Tucker received her Ph.D. in Organizational Development from the University of North Carolina and is an alumna of Wellesley College.  She has published papers on learning strategies and organizational change.   

For more information, contact SIG leaders, Vickie Bevenour  or Mary Charles Blakebrough (919-493-5424).

© TODN  2020  •  Triangle OD Network  • 1289 Fordham Blvd Suite 115•   Chapel Hill, NC 27514
 Email TODN Board

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software