Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Less Is Definitely More

Time and time again through my own programs, and hearing about coaches and trainers speak about theirs, I am reminded that Less is Definitely More when it comes to group coaching or any other type of group program. Back in March I wrote about the 80/20 rule , which I wanted to resurrect again (unfortunately due to Blogger's capabilities it is now buried in the archives).

In short, the 80/20 rule encourages you to take a look at your overall content for a group coaching program, and to carve out and put aside at least 20% of your content. This material can become part of a follow-up program for that group of participants, or part of another product (for example, an e-course or a retreat program).

Think back to recent group programs you have run. Where would you rate your amount of content? Too much, too little, just right? What's the impact on the group when you have too much content? Overwhelm? Lack of time to really dig into the topics? Lack of engagement because too much is being covered?

My request this week is to ask you to take a look at what you are going to cover in an upcoming program. Apply the 80/20 rule and see what the impact is on the group you are working with! I'd love to hear your experience with the 80/20 rule - feel free to comment.


Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized
Web: www.groupcoachingessentials.com
Email: jennifer@potentialsrealized.com

The next Group Coaching Essentials program starts in a few weeks! We will be meeting on Thursdays from 10:45 - 12 noon (EST) on November 9, 16, 23, 30th. This will be the last program for the year. Are you ready to launch your group coaching programs in January? Reserve your spot today.

Monday, October 16, 2006

The Engaging Exercises for Teams and Groups Manual

It is hard to believe how quickly a year flies! Eighteen months ago, I launched the Engaging Exercises for Teams and Groups Manual. It is designed to support coaches, trainers and other professionals who work with teams and groups.

The 60 page manual, available in both Electronic and Binder Copy Editions, includes twenty-five participatory and engaging exercises to use with teams and groups during workshops or retreats. Many of these exercises can also be used for your participants in group coaching programs. Exercises include Values, My Vison, Partner Introductions, and Next Steps.

The manual is divided into five sections:
  • an introductory section with information on group process, why activities are important;
  • icebreakers and activities to start off sessions;
  • exercises you can to use at any time;
  • closure activities;
  • and a comprehensive resource section.

The resource section includes a workshop planning checklist, a workshop planning matrix, a workshop design matrix and the workshop design template, along with many other resources.

Until November 15th you can order the electronic copy of the Engaging Exercises for Teams and Groups Manual and save 20%. Regularly priced at $24.95 USD/26.95 Canadian the special pricing is $19.95US or $21.50 Cdn. The manual will be sent to you via PDF file. Payments are accepted by Visa, and orders can be placed by sending an email to: jennifer@potentialsrealized.com or by calling us toll free at 1-866-217-1960. Faxed orders can be sent to 1-866-217-1960.

This is a perfect addition to your group program library. For more information please visit Group Coaching Essentials or the Potentials Realized website for an overview of the manual, or download an order form here.

Looking forward to hearing from you!


Jennifer Britton, CPCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
www.groupcoachingessentials.com www.potentialsrealized.com
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960
Phone: 416-491-9680

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

More resources for group work

I must admit that I didn't get back with my promised posting last week -- it seems as though just as quickly as the leaves are starting to fall from the trees, a number of new corporate and group clients are starting to arrive at my doorstep. Isn't it amazing how the metaphor of seasonal change can bring so much richness?

I received a wonderful new book on games last week from ASTD (www.astd.org). I often speak to coaches about what a great resource ASTD is (as is CSTD - the Canadian Society for Training and Development). If you are looking for resources and information on learning and development, and working with teams and groups, ASTD is an organization you must connect with. The have fantastic chapters across the US that you can get involved with, as well as a strong international network. Their annual international conference (usually held in May/June) is chock full of information. They also hold an annual E-Learning Conference - TechKnowledge in the early part of the year. Their early bird registration deadline is coming up soon, so if E-learning is an area you want to start to play in and prehaps Las Vegas is a place you want to visit, you may want to consider attending the TechKnowledge conference. I attended back in 2003 and took away some amazing new knowledge and skills.

Steve Sugar and Jennifer Whitcomb have put out a great new book called Training Games which includes a lot of how tos, some exercises and a lot of information on how to select the right exercise or game for different groups. You can check it out further at ASTD's online store: http://store.astd.org. Special discounts apply for ASTD members (and if you aren't one yet, it's a great investment).

One of the topics I speak alot about is the skill sets needed by group coaches. As trained coaches to do 1-1 work we already bring a great toolkit and have many, many tools to use in group contexts. However, I do believe that anyone working with groups as a coach should also have a solid understanding in group development, group facilitation skills, and knowledge of adult and experiential education principles. If you are looking to add these skills and knowledge, or brush up on them, consider some of the programs and conferences held by ASTD.

On the topic of conferences, we are less than a month away from the ICF Conference in St. Louis (November 1-4). I am so looking forward to seeing so many friends and colleagues in person, many of whom I will finally be putting a face to a voice. Will you be there? I'd love to hear if you will be there and would love to connect in person!


Jennifer Britton, MES, CPT, CPCC, CHRP
Potentials Realized
http://www.groupcoachingessentials.com and www.potentialsrealized.com
Email: jennifer@potentialsrealized.com