If the quality of the thinking of the people around you is dependent upon the way you are treating them, you might be interested to learn more about the extent to which you are creating a Thinking Environment at the moment.

By answering the questions in the Personal Assessment, you will get an indication of which components you are already creating and which you could develop further. For each question, consider whether this is the way you behave to:

  • a great extent
  • some extent
  • a small extent
  • a very little extent
To what extent do you: Great extent Some extent Small extent Very little
Stay focused on what the person speaking to you is saying rather than rehearsing your response?
Enjoy exploring different ways of looking at the same issue?
Turn off phones, laptops, the TV, etc. and all distractions when meeting/talking with people?
Consider everyone your equal as a thinker?
Stay aware of your reactions at a feeling level to whatever is being said to you?
Share as much accurate information as you have to support the thinking those around you?
Take control of your time and energies so that you are not unduly rushed?
Operate on the basis that 'better than' does not necessarily mean 'best'?
Treat feelings as facts requiring serious consideration?
Refrain from telling people what to do and how to do it?
Ask more questions of people than you offer solutions when they have a problem to solve?
Ensure that the people around you get an equal opportunity to speak?
Seek the views of people from different fields or backgrounds before making important decisions?
Encourage others to consider alternative possibilities in their thinking?
Take time to think as a matter of course?
Tell the people around you what you appreciate about them?
Express your feelings about issues as well as what you think?
Keep your eyes on the person who is speaking
Ensure that decisions are made on the basis of what is known to be true?
Make a conscious effort to rearrange your physical surroundings to make them more conducive to relaxed thinking?
Encourage others to be themselves and not to conform to your way of doing things?
Challenge others to question their own assumptions?
Look for ways to build the confidence and self esteem of those around you?
Maintain your confidence in the presence of people in authority or more senior than you?
Remain mindful of your own physical comfort needs when meeting others?
Allow people to finish their own sentences rather than jumping in to finish them on their behalf?
Tend to notice what is already good in a situation as well as what could be improved?
Recognise and attempt to minimise competitive behaviour between friends and colleagues?
Hold back from trying to solve other peoples' problems?
Encourage others to challenge your point of view?
Actively encourage others to say what they really think?
Make time for others when they need to talk?
Express thanks, both written and verbal, at every opportunity?
Ask 'what if' questions of the people around you?
Ensure that you do not interrupt others when they are speaking?
Take conscious steps to maintain a relaxed presence?
Make a conscious effort to ensure that your position/authority/grade does not stop others from telling you what they really think?
Consider other peoples' physical comfort as important when they are with you?
Remain calm and relaxed when someone is openly expressing how they are feeling?
Look for the strengths in those around you rather than the weaknesses?