You are learning from colleagues the whole day long. You learn from each other's approach during team meetings, pass on your know-how during a one-to-one conversation, and golden tips are even given while you’re at the coffee machine. But do you, as an organisation, want to stimulate and manage learning from each other? Intervision can then certainly provide added value as a methodology. This form of learning in small groups of peers focusses on the questions and challenges arising from the daily work practice. Through a (semi-)structured approach to learning conversations, we work towards insights and advice.
And the key to success is precisely in this structured approach. Each intervision method sets its own accents, but the following five steps will guarantee a successful intervision session:
1. Case clarification via question rounds
From the introduction of a case, work colleagues are immediately ready with ideas on how to tackle it differently, how to solve the problem, etc. This urge to immediately think in opinions and solutions is deliberately withheld in the first steps of intervision. The first task of the intervision group is to study the case in more depth. As a supervisor, you give time to write down questions, and various question rounds are carried out, so that everyone is heard and peace and structure are maintained.
Tip: Perform one or two rounds with factual, informative questions. You should also ensure that there is a round in which the feelings and perceptions of the case bringer are explored
2. Analysis by peers
After the case bringer has answered all the questions from the question round, you, as the supervisor, ask each colleague to provide an individual analysis of the situation in question based on what has been introduced. Which dynamics can be recognised in the situation? Where is the core problem? …
The case bringer listens, but does not (yet) react.
Tip: Ensure that the analysis focuses on the environmental factors as well as on the person of the case bringer.
3. Reformulation by the case bringer
The case bringer is given the opportunity to reformulate the challenge, based on the analyses made by colleagues and/or questions from the clarification phase that have activated thinking processes. The reformulation becomes the basic question for the consultative round.
Tip: Ensure that the reformulation is also a viable learning question. As the supervisor, ask questions to ensure that everyone is clear about the (new) learning question.
4. Advice from peers
At last! The time has now come to give advice and suggestions for action. As the supervisor, ask your colleagues to write down as many advice and suggestions for actions as possible, in the ‘I’ form: "In this situation, I would, ", or "If I were you, I would ...". The case bringer also listens during this round, but does not (yet) react.
Tip: Have the advice noted down on post-its or individual pieces of paper, so that the case bringer can take all the advice with him. He/she can then focus on listening, instead of noting down the suggestions.
After having heard all the advice, it is up to the case bringer to indicate which suggestions are appropriate and applicable, and what he/she will do with the insights.
Tip: Do not only have the case bringer speak. The colleagues who have provided the advice have undoubtedly also gained insights into similar situations in their job context.