Untangle and grow

A blog by Alison Maxwell

Monday, 22 August 2011

Can you coach a team? Being client led.

Some writers are very clear that team coaching cannot exist - you can only coach individuals not teams they say. However in my work I am as often as not asked to work with a group in some capacity that is developmental or performance enhancing and otherwise looks and feels very much like a coaching relationship except for the fact that there is more than two of us in the room!

One of the knacks I believe is to see the collective as the client, 'defocussing' the needs of the team members.The outcomes are therefore about creating and shaping a more coherent collective that can think and act together, rather than improving the performance of any one individual.

However, staying in 'client-led mode' can be a challenge as I find that groups expect you to 'train' (aka entertain) them or in some other way stand in an expert position ... it's what they are used to after all. However when groups catch on to the notion that you are there to facilitate the conversation they need to have, rather than the one you (or their boss) think they need, they can get real value

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