This is the third year that I am sending a range of Systemic Team Coaching Christmas Crackers out to the wide and growing global community of team coaches around the world. Each year I take one-line aphorisms that I have found myself using on my various trainings and make a short collection. This year I have included a few at the beginning about the necessary revolution in coaching more generally with the publication of my book this year on “Systemic Coaching” which I wrote with Eve Turner. Like mottos and jokes in Christmas Crackers, they are there to both amuse and help us see the world differently. I hope you enjoy them.
- Don’t ask: Don’t tell
Coaches can become addicted to questions and consultants to telling answers. The team coach needs to avoid both addictions and instead engage in collaborative inquiry, facing the challenges that life is presenting, where neither coach nor coachees have the answer, but together are discovering one.
- Never know better: Never know first
The best insights are co-discovered fresh between the team and the team coach. Pre-packaged knowledge is hard to both digest and own.
- The quality of coaching can be judged by how much time is spent at the learning edge
The learning edge is the place where the coachee and the coach don’t have an answer, but it is clear to both that life is requiring one.
- No such thing as Individual Coaching
When an individual arrives in the coaching room (in person or electronically), their team dynamic; organizational culture; their family system; community and cultural patterns; and the wider ecology; are also part of them and how they shape and narrate their world. The stories they tell grow out of, and are framed by, this rich complex soil of systemic levels.
- We should leave every coaching session; team coaching meeting and supervision session having created new learning that no individual knew before the session started
The world needs new learning that is co-created.
- Generals, missionaries, and colonizers have Missions; Teams need to have a collective Purpose
Missions are about what we want to achieve in the world. Purpose comes from discovering what we can collectively do that the world of tomorrow needs.
- The purpose creates the team, the team does not create their purpose but discovers what it is
Purpose is discovered by exploring who our work and life serves and the changing needs of those stakeholders.
- Turn problems into challenges and challenges into opportunities
Problems, like puzzles, have solutions, but challenges require new thinking, doing and being by the team and its members.
- Listen to the emerging pattern, not the individuals or the separate issues
Individual issues are nearly always symptoms of an underlying pattern. Transforming a pattern usually requires new perspectives – new lenses through which to view the issues.
- Always triangulate
Team coaching requires a team, a team coach, and a joint purpose. Team coaching helps teams move beyond either-or debates to find a third place, and from binary negotiation with partners and stakeholders, to create win-win-win arrangements.
- Co-coaches need to work as a team and role-model effective teamwork
When there are 2 team coaches there are 3 elements – team coach one; team coach two; and their relationship/teamwork. The third element impacts the team as much, if not more than the first two.
- Turn your Stakeholders into Partners
It is so easy to experience stakeholders as a multitude of conflicting demands and miss that all stakeholders are also resources that we can invite into partnership, achieving together what we cannot accomplish apart.
- Team Coaching never ends it only transfers
Team coaching is not carried out by the team coach alone, but by the partnership of the team, the team leader, the team members, and the team coach together. When the team coach gradually leaves a team, the team coaching is continued by the remaining partnership.
Happy Christmas, Hanukah, Solstice, Dōngzhì Festival, Yuletide, Saturnalia, or December holidays to all my friends, colleagues, and Blog followers everywhere.
This year has seen the very successful launch of the Global Team Coaching Institute, which I lead jointly with Professor David Clutterbuck and WBECS. There will be a new GTCI Gateway program and Practitioner program in 2021.
I will also be running a number of Systemic Team Coaching 3-day intensives in 2021. In addition, I will be holding Advanced Retreats for Coaches and Team Coaches during June and September and programmes on Supervising Team Coaching and Transformational Coaching, all in Bath, UK.
There are also Systemic Team Coaching Certificate programmes through The Association of Executive Coaching (AoEC)
15 December 2020
©Renewal Associates 2020 www.renewalassociates.co.uk