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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Psychological Strokes

For everything you wanted to know on building leadership and management, refer Shyam Bhatawdekar’s website:

(Refer our High Quality Management Encyclopedia “Management Universe” at:
For you to come out as a brilliant faculty or workshop leader of this topic on “Psychological Strokes” using the management exercise given here, it will be advisable to get a good grasp on this subject before trying out this management exercise. You will get benefited by reading a comprehensive write-up on psychological strokes titled “Positive Strokes” on the website: (Positive Strokes)

While on this subject, you may also like to refresh your fundamentals on its other related topics on transaction analysis and life positions by referring articles on: (Transaction Analysis- TA) and (Life Positions and OKness)

OK, now coming back to this management exercise on psychological strokes; use this exercise to elaborate on the following various types of strokes and to disguising between them:

1. Positive conditional stroke.
2. Positive unconditional stroke.
3. Negative conditional stroke.
4. Negative unconditional stroke.
5. Neutral or indifferent stroke.

This management exercise is in the form of a role play and is capable of arousing a lot of interest and fun amongst your audience in your workshop or seminar on the topics like “Psychological Strokes”, “Positive Strokes”, “Transaction Analysis”, “Motivation”, “Leadership” etc. So, it may work as an energizer too.

You will need five volunteers from your participants’ batch. These five volunteers will act like five employees of a department of an organization. You will also need a sixth participant to enact as their boss or manager.

Ask the rest of the audience to observe the role play attentively and also ask them to take notes on the kind of exchange of communication that will take place between the boss and each of the subordinates one by one.

Each volunteer who is acting like an employee will go to the sixth volunteer who is acting like the boss, turn by turn to show the work that each one has accomplished. The boss will enact one of the five psychological strokes from the ones listed above, preferably in that serial order by speaking out certain dialogues using an appropriate tone befitting that particular stroke which will construe that particular stroke.

After the five enactments are over, ask the participants to identify the strokes that were meted out by the boss to each subordinate. Let them also evaluate the impact of each stroke on its receiver. Ask them to tell you which of the strokes they found to be more effective and why?

You may also initiate a discussion on how well or effectively the strokes were given by the boss?

Supplement the discussion by your own observations as the faculty of the program and provide some additional inputs on the subject to finally wrap up the session.

Get Hold of the Related Books
You can order the following books on "management games and icebreakers" as printed books and eBooks from Amazon online:
  1. Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
  2. Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers (Volume 2)
  3. Classic Team Building Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
  4. 101 Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
Related Reading: (Repository of a large number of articles in management and leadership): and

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