Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Group and Team Coaching: Four Core Elements of Good Design

Group and Team Coaching - Four Core Elements of Good Design

Copyright 2014: Jennifer Britton. All Rights Reserved

Coaches who work in the realm of group and team coaching can benefit from the addition of
Team Story Board - Copyright J. Britton
instructional design skills, including thinking about sequencing, structure and size when designing their initial program. While we alwas want to lead from the principle of coaching int he moment, once you have more than one person in the room, thinking about structure and design makes a strong coaching process, even stronger.

Today’s blog post explores four elements of  design in any group or team coaching process including:

1. Lead from what your clients need and want. In coaching, our clients “drive the bus” and should shape the coaching process. What do you know about:
- The key issues this group/team wants support around?
- Delivery - virtual, in person, both?
- For Groups - what's the balance between focus on group,and focus on individual? Is there a hybrid?
- Frequency and pacing - what frequency and pace will work best

Questions to consider:
As you think about the group or team you are working with right now, what are the responses to each one of these questions? What other things do you need to ask your client, or consider in the design?

2. A balance between Action and Awareness. 
Coaching takes place along the two realms of supporting our clients into taking action, and also deepening awareness around the issues of importance. The go hand and hand. Without action, awareness is just a nice thought. Without awareness and connectivity to the bigger picture, values, vision and goals, action becomes a check-box activity.

Some clients are excellent in getting into action, and in fact benefit when the brakes are applied so they can slow down and gain insights around different perspectives, beliefs and values at play. On the flip side, some clients are great at awareness, and struggle with getting into action.

Question to consider:
What is the balance of action and awareness for the group or team you are working with right now? Collectively? Individually?

3. In design, consider the entire coaching arc - pre-program, during, between sessions and post-program.
The impact of coaching does not always happen in the conversation. Coaching is a process of change, and starts from that every first touch-point, often before you get in the room together as a group or team. Providing team or group members with opportunities to reflect, discover and articulate insights between formal coaching touch-points with peers is also another important design element to consider.

Questions to consider:
 Consider what elements you want to incorporate before you start your work, post-program, and what will support learning between sessions (peer conversation, fieldwork/homework etc).

4. Trust and connection is key in a group or team coaching conversation. Coaching is a deeper conversation and requires vulnerability on the part of our clients. In order to explore “edgy” areas, or uncover what’s really at the heart of conflict, group or team members need to trust each other and connect deeply with each other.

Design elements, activities you incorporate, as well as keeping group size small can support the development of trust and connection. 

Questions to consider:
What is going to support the group in getting to know each other? Connecting?  Building trust?
What program elements might be getting in the way of creating trust and connection?
What are the different stretch zones which exist in the group or team?

As you go to approach your next group or team coaching engagement, consider these four ideas.

Have a great week,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CPCC
Author of Effective Group Coaching (Wiley, 2010) and From One to Many: Best Practices for Team and Group Coaching (Jossey-Bass, 2013)
(416)996-TEAM (8326)
Interested in exploring more around design? Check out chapters in either one of my books (listed above) OR join us for an upcoming program including the Group Coaching Essentials teleseminar starting August (Wednesdays 10-11:15 am Eastern/Toronto) or the Group and Team Coaching Intensive (Toronto: November 1-2, 2014 - Early Bird Rate on Now). You can also book me for an intensive day of 1-1 work through a VIP Day.

1 comment:

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