Many of you have heard me speak of one of my favorite visual tools for my work with group and teams- Visual Explorer from Center for Creative Leadership. Consisting of a series of several hundred vibrant photos, I find myself incorporating it in my work with teams and groups on at least a monthly basis.
Recently a team coaching partner of mine suggested we try something different with a team we are working with next month and we both purchased the JICT deck. I’m so pleased already with this tool - the smaller size, the portability and also the questions on the back of each of the 76 photos. You can purchase a copy for yourself and the great CoachingToys.com site
A third visual deck you may wish to explore is the Points of View: Coaching Game resource. This product has very detailed ways you may wish to incorporate it into your work as a coach, for individuals and also groups.
Of course, you can also develop your own series of photos, or you may wish to get people to create their own drawings or logos (as you see on the slide above).
I continue to find that photos/visuals bring an additional layer into the group and team coaching conversation, and may help some individuals really connect to the coaching process.
So how might you use photos or visuals? Here are five ways I will often incorporate it into my work:
1. As a warm-up/ icebreaker for the session - Have people select the photo that best represents what they are coming to the conversation with.
2. To identify what they bring that is unique to the team or group - this is actually one of my favorite questions to start work together with teams. It is always enlightening to see what themes also emerge across the group or team you are working with. Ask the group what synergies they notice.
3. Around Perspectives - As each group member to "select the photo which represents your perspective around x…"
4. Around Vision - As each group or team member to select the photo which represents your vision for (this team, your business, your family, your…..)
5. As a closure piece - Ask the group or team members to select the photo which represents their key learning, or their next steps, or what’s different about them now.
Some things to keep in mind when you integrate any of these decks is to provide individuals time to reflect on, and take notes, around what they see. What’s clear? What’s not? What’s in focus? What’s missing?
Provide each person with an opportunity to share this with a partner, small group or larger group. What I continue to see in my work is that people get great value out of articulating their thoughts and connections, and also receive tremendous value in the comments and feedback they get from others. Depending on your group size, it can be very useful to allocate time to giving people an opportunity to share.
In your programming and conversations consider how individuals will take this image forward, and how you can reconnect them to it throughout the series of conversations.
In closing, how might you incorporate visuals into your work with teams and groups? What would this look like?
With best wishes,
Jennifer Britton, MES, PCC, CPCC, CPT
Author of From One to Many: Best Practices for Teams and Groups (Jossey-Bass, 2013) and Effective Group Coaching (Wiley, 2010)
Phone: (416)996-TEAM (8326)
Leadership | Teamwork | Coaching
Join us for an upcoming mentor coaching group, the 90 Day BizSuccess Program or an ICF CCE approved coach training program (Essentials or Practicum). Most programs start September 6th and 13th.