The Skills of Engagement Tutorial

SUCCESSFUL USE OF THE SURE MODEL DEPENDS on skillful application of the four rules of engagement and of the foundational skills, practices, and habits of mind that underpin them.

The action moves quickly in our story, and in the interludes we discuss what we see unfolding. This tutorial digs more deeply into the how to behind the strategies and choices Vicky exemplifies and into how you can begin to add each in new or deeper ways to your professional repertoire. Our “Try This” suggestions get you started, and there are plenty of references in the footnotes to enable deeper study.

The tutorial serves as a handy primer for identifying specific skills that can be combined to transform difficult relationships at work. This section covers a lot of ground and might feel overwhelming if you try to take it all in at one go. Use it instead as a reference. Return to it periodically to brush up old skills or acquire new ones. Dip into it when you are looking for ideas about how to handle particular challenges or when you feel your current strategies aren't taking you where you need to go.

We use the four rules of engagement to organize the materials, and provide a summary chart for your convenience. Not every skill or habit, however, fits neatly in only one category.

Inquiry, for example, is discussed as a building block for the first rule (stop, look, and learn). But inquiry can also be a way to unhook. We see Vicky asking Michael questions to deflect ...

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