What is team coaching?
Team coaching is a dynamic approach to team development that goes beyond traditional team-building exercises. While team building focuses on enhancing collaboration through general activities, team coaching delves deeper by applying cooperative principles directly within the workplace environment. Unlike one-off team-building events, team coaching involves an ongoing process aimed at achieving specific team goals aligned with broader organisational objectives.
Through team coaching, team members collectively define objectives under the guidance of a team coach, who facilitates the journey toward achieving these goals. This approach not only fosters effective collaboration but also integrates the team’s aspirations into the larger context of organisational success.
Generative Collaboration lies at the heart of effective team coaching and has been a cornerstone of Wassili’s methodology since 2000. It harnesses the collective intelligence of the group, enabling them to think, coordinate, and function as a cohesive unit. By leveraging generative collaboration principles, teams can achieve outcomes that surpass individual efforts. Team members discover latent resources and learn to bring out the best in each other, resulting in a synergy that enhances overall productivity and innovation. Wassili’s mentor, Robert Dilts, played a pivotal role in shaping this approach.
What does a team coach do?
So, what exactly does a team coach do? The process typically begins with an in-depth assessment of the team’s dynamics, including one-on-one conversations with the team manager and individual team members completing an online team assessment. Drawing from Patrick Lencioni’s renowned framework, the team coach presents the assessment results to the team, serving as a foundation for subsequent coaching sessions. Together, the team identifies priority areas for improvement and collaborates on crafting solutions.
The team coach serves as a catalyst for change, addressing underlying issues that hinder cooperation, fostering constructive dialogue, and guiding conflict resolution efforts. By nurturing generative collaboration, the team coach helps establish a culture of proactive problem-solving and mutual support.
The effect of team coaching?
The impact of team coaching extends far beyond the immediate sessions. Generative teams exhibit enhanced communication, proactive engagement, and a reduction in conflicts. They are characterised by a culture of inspiration, passion, and mutual support, leading to increased productivity and innovation. Members feel empowered, challenged, and healthier, fostering a culture of continuous improvement within the organisation.
Members of a generative team feel empowered, challenged, and healthier, fostering a culture of continuous improvement within the organisation.
In essence, team coaching unleashes the full potential of teams, driving sustainable growth, and fostering a culture of excellence and collaboration within the organisation. Explore more about organisational improvement pillars to understand how team coaching can catalyse positive change within your organisation. Read more about the pillars of organisational improvement here.
Or look at the other types of coaching.
Mental coach of the Dutch women’s volleyball team
I’ve had the privilege of working intimately with one of the world’s premier women’s volleyball teams, the Dutch women’s volleyball team, embarking on an exhilarating 18-month journey that took us from Italy to Canada. Throughout this immersive experience, I worked hands-on with both the team and individual athletes during and between tournaments, gaining invaluable insights into the intricacies of team dynamics and individual performance.
Navigating the highs and lows of competitive sports, I’ve witnessed firsthand where teams can stumble and how to reignite their momentum, even amidst the intense pressures of top-tier competition. I’ve learned the transformative power of vulnerability in fostering authentic connections and propelling teams forward, even in the most demanding circumstances.
In the heat of the game, I’ve addressed individual challenges to harmonize the collective effort, witnessing the awe-inspiring synergy that emerges when a team truly coalesces. As relationships within the team strengthen, each individual member flourishes, unlocking their full potential in pursuit of shared goals. It never ceases to amaze me what a team can achieve when harnessing the diverse strengths of its members in unison. Witnessing a team operate generatively is both magical and liberating, a testament to the boundless possibilities of collaborative endeavor.
Our collective efforts yielded remarkable outcomes, including the highest-ever recorded team collaboration score and a historic 4th place finish at the 2016 Olympics – a testament to the team’s resilience, dedication, and unwavering commitment to excellence.
Implementation of team coaching
I have implemented generative collaboration in many companies and enterprises. To name a few:
- Pentax Europe: Germany, France, Belgium, England, Netherlands – Management Teams
- Ministry of Agriculture – 140 Leaders
- Forestry Commission – Board of directors, 40 Directors and several teams
- Quince advertising – 130 employees
- Dutch Film academy – ICT teams
- High school for the arts Amsterdam – ICT teams
- Levi Strauss Europe – 120 staff and management of finance department
- Greenpeace Netherlands – several teams
- Case New Holland, Belgium, Italy – Management Teams
- Bas Computers et al. – Management Teams