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Road to Resilience Team Coaching

Team coaching is one way to reach more leaders because it is cost-effective and improves team performance. Modern research on teams shows that collaborating in teams increases motivation, effort, and productivity. Harvard professor Richard Hackman says "...about half of the leading edge companies in this country now deploy most of their employees in self-organizing teams, many of them with remarkable results." Teams bring together complementary skills that exceed those of any individual member and create synergy.

Teams are a necessary part of the work environment and having coaches for the teams results in dramatic outcomes as those teams realize their goals. The team coach’s job is to support the team to reach goals in a timely fashion while leaders on the team are developing their skills. The learnings are taken and applied back on the job to achieve team objectives and meet organizational goals.

 “What we know about individuals, no matter how rich the details, will never give us the ability to predict how they will behave as a system. Once individuals link together they become something different. Relationships change us, reveal us, evoke more from us. Only when we join with others do our gifts become visible, even to ourselves.”

- Margaret Wheatley and Myron Kellner-Rogers

To this end, during team coaching, the coach and team members are supporting one another through continuous feedback and modeling.

“ . . . for organizations to succeed, they need involved and committed workers who are self-directed, creative, and inwardly driven to learn.”

- C. Clinton Sidle

Definition of Team Coaching
Team coaching is provided to intact groups for the purpose of developing the ability of the team to work together to achieve results. It can be defined as direct interaction with a team intended to help members make full, coordinated use of collective resources in building relationships, communicating and accomplishing the work.

“In organizations, real power and energy is generated through relationships. The patterns of relationships and the capacities to form them are more important than tasks, functions, roles, and positions.”

- Margaret Wheatley

In today’s world, work does not get done without building relationships. In order to achieve the mission and align with organizational intentions, it is important for leaders to be able to work within functional teams. A team coach helps move the team forward to produce more effective results.


Effective Tools for Team Development

Team Survey/Diagnosis
Team improvement begins with an accurate and timely assessment of organizational goals and priorities in order to set forth clear team objectives.

Prior to coaching the team, a T.E.A.M.S. (Teams Evolving and Mastering Success) needs assessment is done with each member. Keeping the team objective in the forefront of the entire process is imperative. Some of the following questions are a good place to start the question development part of the survey process.

  • What practices are encouraged for people to use?
  • What practices are important to develop within people to meet the demands of the organization?
  • What practices are self-defeating or destructive to the team and organization?
  • What practices are most critical for success?
  • Do the team’s customers believe we are delivering excellent and results?
  • Does the team believe we are delivering excellence and results?
  • Does the team have the information it needs?
  • What are the specific gaps we need to address in order to maximize excellence and results?
  • What are the strengths we can leverage?
  • Does the team have a business strategy?

A T.E.A.M.S. survey can discover the effective and ineffective practices of a team or group, allowing for necessary adjustments and coaching with the input of everyone involved. Team development can be easily assessed and accurately addressed with T.E.A.M.S. survey results. A T.E.A.M.S. survey will ensure the team is evolving and mastering success along with the coaching. It is customizable to measure what the coach and team need to know, is anonymous, is easily administered anywhere and anytime through secure on-line access with results delivered in a report supported by coaching to meet the team’s particular needs.

The data from the survey will:

  • Help the leader, team and coach answer key questions that frame the entire engagement.
  • Show where the team is aligned with the goals of the team and the organization.
  • Assist in creating sustainable change.
  • Identify areas where leadership development needs are.
  • Support the team in putting together a roadmap to move forward.
  • Give the team a common language for what it takes to be successful.

Team Development Modules

To create a high performance team, you may want to use an immediate solution to create the interactive learning that helps improve team functioning. The INSIGHT® Team Development Modules consist of twelve step-by-step self-directed team-building exercises that help teams:

  • Resolve conflict that is eroding productivity
  • Discuss issues they have been avoiding
  • Commit to building a winning team
  • Agree on a shared mission goals and action plans
  • Increase creativity and enhance brainstorming results

Advantages of using the development modules:

Each module will help you and your team discuss a specific topic important to effective teamwork and complete activities designed to improve team effectiveness in that area.  The modules get right to the point and are practical and focused without theory to wade through or pointless exercises or games to play.

Get your team pulling together
with INSIGHT Team Development

Although the word "team" is used throughout the materials, the modules can be used by any group of people who work or play together. Regardless of whether your group is a formal team, a special task force, a virtual team, a sports team, or a traditional department, it will benefit from the modules.

The modules can be used in any order. Depending on your team's needs, you and your team can work through all the modules as a complete developmental program, group the modules by topic, or complete individual modules to improve specific skills.

Time saving
Each of the modules is only three pages long and takes less than an hour or two to complete. You may simply set aside some extra time and complete the modules during regular staff meetings or, if schedules permit, arrange special team development sessions to focus specifically on the modules.

Easy to use
Everything needed to successfully work through the modules is built in. Each module contains discussion activities that encourage participation, step-by-step instructions for covering the objectives, and exercises for applying the new skills.

Cost effective
Modules can be purchased as a set or individually. As a plus, reproducible worksheets make the materials affordable to use on an ongoing basis.

You can contract with a trained facilitator to help your team use the modules or use an in-house facilitator or team member. All the instructions are included.

Getting Started: The INSIGHT Team Development System includes a diagnostic pre-assessment and 12 modules. Many teams find it helpful to complete the pre-assessment to identify those areas that need improvement, and then together decide which modules to work through. Others review the descriptions and simply select those modules they believe would be beneficial. Many teams complete all the modules. Then, they complete a post-assessment to measure their progress. Many teams complete all the modules and then complete a post-assessment to measure their progress.

Individual and/or group follow-up coaching is recommended for best results.

Contact me for more information about the T.E.A.M.S. Survey and the INSIGHT Team Development System.


Copyright ©2008 Margie S. Heiler

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