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Quadrant Analysis

The Quadrant Analysis is one of the most powerful tools a leader can use and it has many applications so is one of the core techniques in the toolkit depending on how it is applied. 

Using the Quadrant Analysis helps a leader to interrogate their thinking and motivation in different ways to create a compelling argument to make a decision and take subsequent action.

The four quadrants must be interrogated and recorded using the exact wording shown on the diagram. If you alter or paraphrase this language then you are actually asking a different question.


quadrant Analysis.png

By asking these questions in this order, you will explore the positive and negative aspects of both achieving and not achieving the intended outcome. The leader should therefore have a much broader framework of ideas from which they can decide whether this is the right thing for them to do (or not).

The tool must be also used in a strict sequence otherwise it will not work correctly - for this reason, I suggest the facilitator takes responsibility for recording the leader's comments and responses, which frees up the leader to concentrate and focus on their thinking. The leader's responses should be recorded verbatim - it is very important to capture their precise language patterns - record their responses as bulletpoints and exhaust the question in each quadrant before moving on to the next.


The Quadrant Analysis is particularly useful in situations where a decision could carry benefits or consequences or if the leader needs to consider the value and implications of taking a particular course of action. It can also be a very useful team exercise to share ideas, encourage creativity and build consensus for an agreed action or change.

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