An example of using the Trialogue approach in the context of the Diversity Icebreaker workshop
During the introduction for working in groups:
In what way will the other colours create a challenge/problem for you?
When presenting between the groups:
Start with each of the groups presenting their own self-image, and then turn towards the challenges in interaction:
- Red presents toward Blue
- Blue presents toward Red
- The Red and Blue have a conversation between them about good ways of cooperating
- Green observes both presentations and the dialogue, but after 10 – 15 minutes of dialogue between Red and Blue, they ask for time to function as a “Reflecting Team with Multiple Voices”. Those in the Green group share ideas between themselves, while Red and Blue listen for questions that shed light upon the relationship development and understanding of their own contribution in this discussion. These questions that the Green might reflect over can resemble these examples:
- “How can they approach each other in a way that will increase openness and engagement?” (behaviourally and interaction-oriented)
- “What questions or topics seem to engage both groups?”
- “Which interactions seem to increase energy and openness?”
- “If the communication gridlocks, what could be done that opens it up again?”
- “What would be a Green idea for how they themselves could involve Red and Blue in a positive systemic perspective?”
- Then Red and Blue start the dialogue again – Green continues observing.
- Each of the colour groups are then separated to formulate learning points.
- Learning points are shared between groups, which can be done in plenary or in small three-person groupings of Red, Blue and Green, if the desire is that all present should be active.
This structure can then be repeated twice, where Blue observe Red-Green interaction and Red observes Green-Blue interaction. This process is relatively time consuming, but it has important qualities relevant for training: observation, dialogue with the other, focus on the relationship development, and ideas and actions that might facilitate the interaction. It also combines the possibility of self-awareness and self-understanding in relation to the other two colours – underlining the idea of relational self. It also creates a transparent learning process that can inspire and build confidence across colours.
The time spent can also be reduced by limiting the number of repetitions, and by waiving learning points in steps 6. and 7.