An effective and well-managed Team can significantly improve the performance of individuals. For this reason, Team Coaching is the main tool through which the company can focus the Team, increase sales and achieve business objectives.
Discovering and enhancing the contribution of individuals, improving communication, time management and the division of roles within the Team.
By working on the team, on sharing the goals and breaking down the perceived limits, strong group cohesion can be achieved, with a consequent improvement in performance and the working environment.
Let’s see together the steps to follow during a Team Coaching course:
The Team Coaching process winds through various theoretical and practical phases.
The first of these phases, the one you see circled in red, is the Alignment, useful for creating the profile of the each person and the team as a whole. Often companies want to work on final goals without knowing the starting point. Then, both on an individual and group level, hidden contradictions or apparently harmless attitudes may exist and damage the functioning of the team and block its growth. The first phase is therefore indispensable for aligning all the team members, making sure they all look in the same direction.
In the alignment phase, specific topics such as Vision, Mission, Values and Competences are discussed. Very broad topics that obviously need to be contextualized and customized according to the needs of each team or company.
It is equally important, when it comes to alignment, to also think about Climate and Environment. We often talk about business and working methods, but we rarely work on what we experience inside the office, also in relation to colleagues, if not when situations become heavy.
After creating the individual profile of each team member and the profile to the team taken as a whole, we proceed to verify and improve the team’s potential through dynamic, sporting and/or creative experiential activities.
In fact, the second phase of the path is Experiential Training: it is only “on the field” that the qualities of a work team are manifested and improved. It is here that our Team Building activities are part of the Team Coaching process and in this phase musical and creative activities are preferable.
During this phase there is also the first check point, a moment in which we all meet together and through which we can check the progress made and the results achieved and, if necessary, change and give a different direction to the path, based on the team needs.
One thing we want to let you know is that the Team Coaching path is not carried out through classroom lessons but is experienced by the participants through a series of activities with great emotional impact.
Experiential learning constitutes an experience-based learning model, which can be cognitive, emotional or sensory. The learning process takes place through the action and experimentation of situations, tasks or roles in which the subject becomes an active protagonist and puts his or her resources and skills into the field to achieve a goal.
What we care about, therefore, is knowing how to test the group in conditions that push it to manifest its hidden potential and, to do this, we start from what is discussed in the first phase of Alignment. If, for example, the team feels weak on the side of imagination or creativity, it is up to us to propose them an activity that stimulates the participants in that sense.
In this part of the Team Coaching the skills that are most trained are communication, time management and the language of leadership. It is important to make a team aware of the value of diversity, the importance of collaboration and the contribution of each one, dialogue and knowing how to get involved.
The third phase, after the experiential activities, consists in testing the team in more difficult and demanding conditions. This occurs on Challenge Day, which can host extreme sports Team Building activities such as Survival, Orienteering, Rafting or even Igloo Building. During this day in which more particular activities than usual are carried out, we have the second check point, useful so that we can continue monitoring progress and results.
During the Challenge Day the participants work to create connections and increase trust between each other, helping each other to get out of their comfort zone. Thus, they begin recognizing the positive labels and stereotypes that exist between them, becoming wishful to connect first as human beings, then also as colleagues.
The last moment of check and control is in the fourth phase, the final one. At the end of the Team Coaching progress, to celebrate the changes and the results achieved we have the moment of the party: in this phase we offer different kind of activities concerning food and drink, such as Team Cooking, Cocktail Challenge or Wine Games.
The characteristic of the Team Coaching process and its difference compared to a simple a Team Building activity lies precisely in the constant monitoring of progress and results achieved. This occurs on some particular days, with periodic commencement.
The duration is variable and customizable! Generally, our advice is to follow a path of at least four meetings, which is the minimum time to work on the basic concepts. An average of 15 meetings would be the necessary time to work deeply on the chosen themes, observing the Team at 360°. The minimum time needed to reach goals and see a real change, however, is 6 months.
After sketching a team profile and integrating the skills and potential of its members, we continue working on the communication within the team.
It seems trivial to say that communication is at the basis of all efficient teamwork, yet, although there is always a lot of talk about communication, this must be effective and coherent in order to be such. The thing we need to learn is how to turn emotion into words. In issues such as communication, adaptability of thought is very important.
Communication is not in fact something distinct from behavior. Indeed, we can say that communication is behavior.
The purpose of Team Coaching is precisely to make aware the motivations stimuli involved in communicative behaviors, as we often do not realize how we communicate.
How can this be done? With various brainstorming exercises: the participants are asked some questions related to the emotional sphere and, once the situation is outlined, they must express their reactions and emotions using words.
Time can be the fundamental variable. Our goals also have deadlines and must be distinguished by priority. Are we able to attribute the right value to our every commitment?
Dwight E. Eisenhower divided the problems into two types: urgent and important, specifying that “the important thing is rarely urgent and what is urgent is rarely important.” The urgency/importance matrix is very useful for observing how we tend to spend our days but it is up to us to understand what to include in the different categories.
Time management must be done respecting objectives and priorities and considering a purpose to be achieved. The choice is to focus on crucial activities that can really make a difference in life and work.
Having many goals, in fact, could be counterproductive. A very present trend in today’s world is to set many goals regarding different areas of our life, such as health, work, family or culture. All important areas which, however, risk creating divergences. The most useful thing to do is therefore focus on one or maximum two goals at a time: this is the key concept of Gary Keller, The One Thing. Focusing on only one goal at a time allows people to go far.
The fascinating thing, then, is that once an important goals has been achieved, the next one may be even more important. This, called the “domino effect“, is the procedure whereby from a lesser objective it is possible to achieve increasingly larger ones.
Maybe we don’t realize it, yet language has an extraordinary power, and this is also why the quality of a true leader is the guaranteed by the usage of correct words. A far more powerful tool that direct command, however, is persuasion. Today team members are often highly qualified experts who know how to make decisions independently. The role of the leader, therefore, is no longer to control and give orders to the team, but must become that of being able to make it participate and collaborate in harmony.
Persuasion is a tool that we all try to use in our daily lives in one way or another. What few of us reflect on, however, is that persuasion can also be used on ourselves, as a motivator.
Before persuading others, still, it is necessary to understand how the mechanism works on ourselves even if, in any case, we cannot expect the values that move us to apply also to those around us. To understand what moves others, therefore, we must retrace all the reasoning and the mechanisms of thought.
Furthermore, leadership is often linked to the management of collaborators and communication difficulties in the company. There are three small tips that can help manage collaborators and their communication. These are: recognizing merits (“catch people doing something right“), growing with feedbacks (“feedback is the breakfast of champions“) and taking the right time to explain.
The market in which companies operate is constantly evolving and every day poses new challenges. For this reason, it is important to learn how to manage change through experiential activities.
The term “change management” refers to an approach structured for individual changing, in groups and organizations, that makes it possible to transition from a current structure to a desire future one. With change management we are able to provide tools and processed to recognize and understand the change itself, often due to innovation. Change Management goes hand in hand with Digital Transformation. Introducing technologies without transforming processes is useless and it only proves to be a waste of time and money. It is a complex process, as it has a strong impact on people’s habits, which by their nature always show a certain resistance and uncertainty when facing change.
Team Coaching is the tool that helps to improve group performance. Through a Team Integration process, the team is guided in the transition from a vision of individual members, centered on their skills and ways of thinking, to a global vision.
First of all, we trace the individual profile of each member of the group. In a second moment we formulate the profile of the Team taken as a whole, indivisible. Each member of the Team becomes aware of their own potential and of others’ so that they can develop the skills useful to the group in the most effective way.
Wha are these skills? For example, the ability to listen to each other, the ability to create harmonious interpersonal relationships and that of defining rules and roles. Team Coaching also favors the development of the potential of the Team Leader as a catalyst for the process of improving group performance.