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Thinking Environment


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© 2003 A H A Frost



This is a four-day course which gives a thorough grounding in the Thinking Environment and its applications. It teaches people how to be Thinking Partners and how to do Thinking Sessions.

The crucial backbone of this course is how participants can practically apply the principles of a Thinking Environment in their lives at home and work with individuals and groups.

The number of participants is limited to four. The Course is structured so that Days 1 and 2 are run consecutively, Day 3 takes place a month later and Day 4 a month after that on dates mutually acceptable to the participants. The Course is taught in a Thinking Environment, requiring respect, personal integrity and rigorous confidentiality.

An essential element of the course is practical participation and all the exercises on course days are coached by Alan Frost.

Throughout the four days there are discussions and feedback about the benefits accruing from the adoption of the Thinking Environment model.



The course begins with an exploration of the ten components of a Thinking Environment, suggesting that applying any one of them will significantly enhance the quality of any interaction or discussion and that the application of all ten as a system has a profound effect on the thinking of individuals and groups. The discussion also covers how the components are linked with and support each other.


Participants are introduced to the theory, principles and six-part format of a Thinking Session and take part in Session demonstrations. They experience and practice, through coached thinking sessions, how to be Thinking Partners and the power and freedom of thinking for themselves. Participants are encouraged to think about real issues in their work or lives.


Participants learn how assumptions can hinder and block progress, how to identify assumptions and the three levels of Limiting Assumptions. These three levels are called Facts, Possible Facts and Limiting Bedrock Assumptions.

Participants learn about the two kinds of Bedrock Assumptions (Subjective Perceptions of Self and Subjective Perceptions of How Life Works), and how Bedrock Assumptions materially influence decision taking, goal setting and the achievement of success. The discussions examine tenacious group-identity assumptions which limit the thinking of socially marginalised groups in the workplace or in the world in general; successful recognition of diverse groups in organisations depends on removing these assumptions from people's thinking.


The identification of assumptions surrounding issues or a decision is the first step in removing them and their constraining effects on thinking and action. The removal of limiting assumptions is effected by using carefully worded Incisive Questions. Through practical experience of tutored and untutored Thinking Sessions, participants learn how to accurately compose Incisive Questions based on a person's thinking and use them to help that person to remove assumptions and create a resurgence of freedom of thought, creativity, clarity, courage and, if appropriate, a highly relevant action plan or goal.


Everyone belongs to a multitude of different groups which are identified by others by a series of assumptions about those groups. These assumptions can have major adverse effects on the group's power, influence and contributions, often to the detriment of the organisation or community. Through practical experience of The Diversity Exercise participants explore the roots of discriminatory attitudes and behaviour by examining the untrue limiting assumptions society makes about people on the basis of the labels or identities of the groups to which they belong. Participants learn how to remove these limiting assumptions and replace them with true liberating assumptions that free people and groups to reclaim their self esteem and influence, and realise their potential.


Participants discuss and practice (away from the course) applying the Thinking Environment™ principles to such situations as team building, meetings, brain storming, creative thinking, supervision, dispute resolution, difficult discussions, performance review, peer mentoring and coaching, group presentations, strategic thinking and planning, mergers and acquisition processes, post-merger integration and professional coaching. An important part of the course structure is for participants to feedback and discuss their experiences in applying the Thinking Environment model.


There are extensive course materials included that cover all aspects of the Thinking Environment.

"TIME TO THINK" by Nancy Kline

The Course is based on Nancy Kline's book "Time To Think" and it is recommended that participants read the book before attending the Course. Copies of "Time To Think" can be obtained from any good book shop or from Alan Frost.

For more details please call us on 07802 464 100
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