Monday, October 29, 2007

Great magazine for Coaches - choice Magazine

If you are looking for a great magazine to stay abreast with our profession, check out choice Magazine, the magazine for professional coaches. Published quarterly, choice is full of useful articles and resources to keep you ahead of the curve. Now in it's fourth year of publication, choice provides essential insights and perspectives on the coaching profession.

To find out more visit Choice has had some terrific editions out lately including one on the important difference between coaching and therapy. Upcoming editions include Coaching and Youth, and Corporate Coaching.

If you are going to the ICF Conference this week in Long Beach, check out the choice booth - I'm sure that publisher Gary Schliefer will be there. The subscription is a great investment!

What's been your experience?

Have a great week,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960
The last Group Coaching Essentials program for 2007 starts next week (Mondays from 12 - 1:15 pm EST) and will be held on November 5, 12, 19 and 26th, plus a fifth call in January. If you are looking to launch your own group coaching programs for early 2008, now's the time to get moving on them. For more information on the program click here. I hope that you will join me. Space is limited to 6 coaches this session. You can register online at the links above, or by calling me toll free at 1-866-217-1960.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Join Me Friday for the Tips and Tools for Your Workhshop or Retreat Teleseminar

Are you looking for some quick tips and tools for your next workshop or retreat program? Join me this coming Friday, October 26th from 12 - 1:30 pm (EST) for a 1.5 hour teleseminar. During the program we will explore 10 tips and tools to amp up your next group program.

By the end of the program, participants will:
  • Explore common challenges for group program leaders, and what to do to navigate them;
  • Acquire a basic understanding of adult learning principles;
  • Have a framework to "Know Your Client"
  • Brainstorm ideas on marketing and promotion for your next event
  • Learn how to not reinvent the wheel with your group programs and other service offerings
  • Get ideas about engaging exercises to include in their group programs
  • And learn about two of my favorite best practices

This is an interactive, intimate teleseminar, with space limited to 8. Participants are encouraged to bring any, and all, questions you have about group programs to the call. You'll also receive a 20 page workbook to take forward for your own group program development. The cost of the program is $45 US.

To reserve your spot and pay by PayPal, please visit: If you have questions or would like to register by phone, please call me toll free at 1-866-217-1960.

I hope that you will join me on Friday for an action packed hour and a half!

With best wishes,


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Action, Action, Action in Business

Moss doesn't grow on a rolling stone. What's the amount of moss surrounding your business these days? How much action have you been taking in the last few months? What action has been showing measurable results? Are you keeping track?

I am a real proponent for strategic action based in solid planning and vision for business owners. However, what often happens is that we get so caught up in the planning and visionning, that we don't actually move into the action phase. It may be because we feel we don't have enough information to get into action (ie. we need more education/more networking/more courses), we are not prepared enough, we're scared, we're not good enough. These are often the things we hear from our clients when we look at limiting beliefs.

What limiting beliefs are you setting with your business? What action are you shying away from? What excuses are you making?

On the flipside, sometimes we can't get into action, because there is so much on our plate. When was the last time you took time to strategically look at what your business priorities are, what's paying off, and what is becoming dead weight?

I would challenge each one of you to take a look at where you have been spending your time and energy, what the results are, and what might not be serving you any more. The "not to do" list can often be just as powerful as the "to do" list.

Lots of food for thought!

Have a great week,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Group Coaching Essentials

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Having essence infuse your group program development

I've been developing two new retreats for 2008 with colleagues in the last few months. One of my biggest lessons learned from this is process the realization of what an impact defining the essence you want for your program can have.

Both retreat programs I am working on right now are targeted to couples and as such draw on very similar concepts and exercises, yet have a very different feel. Last night we had a major breakthough with one of the retreats when we decided to look at the question: "What's the essence we want to create in this program? How is it different than other programs?"

To help us get really clear on what we wanted to create, we asked questions like:
* What's the energy we want to create?
* What's the ambiance?
* What colours come to mind with the program?
* What are some of the metaphors which would represent the program?
* What's the feel we want to create?

Keep in mind that we had already drafted the program and objectives. By getting really clear last night on the essence we wanted to create, it gave us a new strategic focus and made it really easy to start developing our marketing message. I have no doubt that the work we did last night is going to shorten a lot of processes in lead up to these programs, as well as help keep us grounded to what we want to create.

What's been your experience in coming from a place of defining your essence for a program in addition to defining your content? What results have you seen? I'd love to hear about your experience and any other questions you might want to add.

Have a great week!

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CPCC, CHRP, CPT
Group Coaching Essentials
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Two copies left of the Engaging Exercises for Teams and Groups Manual

A few weeks ago I wrote about a fall cleaning special I was having on the Engaging Exercises For Teams and Groups Manual -- they have been flying out of my office door with rapid speed and there are only 2 left of the original 12 (I found an additional five during fall cleaning).

The manual includes 25 exercises which you can use in your work with teams or groups, and covers essential information on different types of exercises such as icebreakers and closure exercises. For more information and to view the table of contents, click here.

In order to make space for the second edition of the Manual in 2008, I've cut the cost of the manual by 33% -- if you are one of the first two to respond to snap up the last two manuals in store, you'll get the manual for $20 US, plus $10 shipping (regardless of where you are located).

You can order and pay for your manual by PayPal here, or give me a call toll free at 1-866-217-1960.

It will make a great addition to your resource collection!

If you are looking for more than just the manual and want to hear about how you can really use the exercises, I will be holding a 1.5 hour teleseminar this coming Friday, October 19th from 12 - 1:30 pm (EST) on Engaging Exercises for Teams and Groups. Participants for the teleseminar will also receive an electronic copy of the entire manual, plus the opportunity to bring all of your questions to the call which I will answer. Space is limited to 8 and the cost is $59 US. I hope that you will join me!

To register for the teleclass on the 19th of October (12 - 1:30pm (EST)) you can reserve and pay online at or call me toll free at 1-866-217-1960. Feel free to also drop me a line by email at with Engaging Exercises October 19th in the header.

Cheers to an exciting week ahead of working with teams and groups!


Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Group Coaching Essentials
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Last Call - Group Coaching Essentials starts Thursday at 8pm (EST)

Just a quick reminder that this month's Group Coaching Essentials teleseminar program begins tomorrow, Thursday, evening from 8-9:15 pm (EST).

If you are a coach who is looking to expand your work into the areas of groups or teams, the Group Coaching Essentials program covers:

* The Foundations of Group Coaching - What it is, how it differs from individual coaching, group process and best practices of group coaching
* The Essentials of Designing Group Coaching programs - tools, templates and ideas to make your own program design effective and tailored to your clients' needs
* Marketing Group Coaching - Tools and tips to ensure that you get your programs filled. Many of these marketing ideas are also applicable to your larger business
* Filling Your Toolbox with Engaging Exercises - We'll spend a week talking about exercises for your group coaching programs. I will share with you some of my favorites.

You'll also receive as part of the program:
* 5 x 75 minute group calls (maximum 6 participants)
* an 85 page Group Coaching Manual (sent as weekly electronic modules)
* Weekly exercises to move your group coaching ideas into reality
* Pre and post course 1-1s with me

The cost for the program is $250 US. To learn more or to register, click here. You can pay by PayPal at the link at the bottom of this page, or pay by Visa by calling me toll free at 1-866-217-1960.

This month's session will hold group calls on Thursdays from 8-9:15pm (EST) on October 11, 26, November 8 and 15th, plus a fifth call in December/January (date to be set by group).

If you can't make this month's sessions, our last class of the year will be held starting November 5th on Mondays from 12 - 1:15 pm (EST) on November 5, 12, 19 and 26th, plus a fifth call in January.

Now's the time to get your group coaching programs in gear for the end of the year and the start of 2008!

Here's what past participants have said about the program:
"Group Coaching Essentials is a wonderful laboratory for learning key concepts about adult learning, instructional design, group dynamics and more. Jennifer Britton's wonderfully organic facilitation style allows each session to be a flowing, dynamic group conversation that is rich in learning and personal insights! I recommend this program for anyone who wants to gain confidence, knowledge and resources in preparation for launching their own group coaching program"
- Erin Curran, CPCC,

“Thank you, Jennifer, for expanding my knowledge of group coaching immeasurably. I not only learned a terrific amount of useful, practical information, but appreciate the division of how you covered it. The pacing of the classes was perfect-- with time in between to practice what we learned. In my group coaching practice, I’ve implemented many of the tools and resources you provided to give further value to my clients.”
Ellen Schuster-Nastir, M Ed, CPCC,'s what a Heidi Micheals, CPCC, said about her experience of working with her first few groups after taking the program this summer:
"My learning: I understand much better what etails to pay attention to, what not to. Pay attention to having things settled and ready to go, have a map of what you want to accomplish...but let go of getting to the exact destination. Its' like being on a site-seeing are there to see something wonderful...but at the same time, there might be a beautiful bird that just landed, the sky is blue, or it starts to you take time to notice it and take it all in. Open the awareness to what turns up."
- Heidi Michaels, CPCC,

I hope to have you join us for an interactive and intimate look at group coaching. Please feel free to give me a call toll free at 1-866-217-1960 or email me at

With best wishes for your group work,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CPCC, CHRP, CPT
Group Coaching Essentials
Potentials Realized
Email: jennifer{at}
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Monday, October 08, 2007

Dealing with Difficult Participants

Dealing with Difficult Participants
Copyright 2007 - Jennifer Britton. All Rights Reserved

How often do you come across difficult participants in programs that you run?

Difficult participants can come in all shapes and sizes -
- the bossy talker who likes to take over the group process
- the cynical silencer who sits with their arms folded and doesn't say a word throughout the entire program
- the corporate employee who states at the start of the session that they are sick and tired of another "useless waste of time"
-the "know it all" who has an answer to everything and knows more about the material than you do as facilitator

What if I told you there are simple things that you can do to avoid these situations or turn things around?

Here are a few suggestions to consider implementing to avoid some of the difficult participant traps:

1. If feasible, meet with participants prior to the start of a program. This is part of every process for me with group and team coaching programs, but may not always happen if I am running a workshop or facilitation session. Often "difficult participants" emerge if they feel that their voice is not being heard, or their needs being met. I typically spend 10 - 15 minutes with each participant before the start of a program (by phone) and find out from them what they want to take away from the program and how the program fits into their larger picture. It may sound like this is quite time consuming (and it can be) but it does allow me to start connecti with each participant to ensure that their needs are really being met. This upfront work allows for a more tailored program, and for some discussion on expectations even before we are together. It can save a lot of headaches along the way.

2. Have the group develop "Ways of Working", "Terms of Engagement" or "Ground Rules" at the start of every engagement (during the first session if it is a multi-session program). By having the group take ownership of their own process from the start this can allow for peer influence, as well as a reference point for future sessions.

3. Address any concerns individually with participants as soon as possible. This is one of those diplomatic skills you will develop with time and your personality and style will play a key role in how it plays out. If I notice behavior that is disruptive to the group process, I will speak to the participant at the first break about what I am noticing. Sometimes they are not aware of the impact their behavior is having. Awareness allows for choice.
If the impact that the behavior is having on the group is quite extreme, it may be a good idea to create an unscheduled break.

4. Get the difficult participant involved. Sometimes participants crave the spotlight, and if they don't get it will try to hijack the group process to get more attention. Could the difficult participant help with flipcharting? Distributing materials? Several years ago during a two week training program, a participant continuously challenged the process (which was designed by the organization), the situation turned itself around when I got her to undertake the flipcharting for some of the brainstorming sessions we held on a daily basis. All of a sudden, the group's greatest critic, became the greatest advocate for the process. A real turning point!

5. Put it back to the group -- How can we make this a really good use of our time? Once in a while you will come across groups that are highly cynical and feel that the process is a huge waste of their time (especially when it is a corporate mandate). I faced a situation like this a few months ago, and when I asked the group "How can we make this a really good use of our time" we were able to cover both the corporate mandated material, as well as address some of their concerns. I won't say that it was an easy process, but everyone did stay the full time!

I'd love to hear from you --- what were some of your most difficult participant moments and how did you address them? Please feel free to comment below.

Have a great week,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Group Coaching Essentials

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

October Program Line Up

It's been a very busy past few weeks for me with client work, and hence the silence on the blog. I'm definitely enjoying the business feast in lead up to our Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada - there is a lot for me to celebrate! I hope that there is for you as well.

There are a number of programs running this month that I wanted to alert you to in case you are interested in bringing your own group coaching programs, workshops or retreats in focus for launch later this year or early 2008. I would love to have you join me for one of the following upcoming programs:

Group Coaching Essentials teleseminar program: The ever popular Group Coaching Essentials program will start for a new session on Thursdays from 8-9:15 pm (EST) on October 11th (next week), 25th, November 8th and 15th plus a fifth call in December or January at a time convenient to the group. This program is for coaches who want to expand their work into the domain of Group Coaching. In addition to the calls you'll also receive an 85 page manual (delivered in weekly modules), pre and post-course 1-1s with me, and support as needed throughout the program. Space is limited to 6 coaches this month and a few spaces still remain. To register or for more information, please call me at 1-866-217-1960 or click here (PayPal payments). Cost: $250 US.

Tips and Tools for Your Workshop or Retreat - Thursday October 18th - 7:30 - 9pm (EST)
This one and a half hour teleseminar covers 10 essential tips and tools to make your next workshop or retreat extraordinary! You'll receive a workbook for future reference, as well as several tools to help you in your program design, implementation and marketing. I always welcome participants to bring their real life questions to this call -- so now is the chance to get answers to any, and all, of your workshop or retreat questions. Cost: $45 US. For more information, and to register, click here. Space is limited to 10.

Engaging Exercises Teleseminar - Friday October 19th: 12 - 1:30 pm (EST)
Are you looking for some new exercises for your next group coaching program, workshop or retreat? Look no further. During this one and a half hour teleseminar we will be covering a range of exercises to make your next roup program engaging, powerful and memorable. Participants also receive the 65 page Engaging Exercises Manual (e-copy) as part of their registration. Space is limited to 8. Cost $59 US.

I look forward to continuing to serve you this month and hope that you can join me for one of these upcoming programs.

With best wishes,

Jennifer Britton, PCC, CPCC, CHRP
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960
Email: jennifer{at}