Coach your teams!

Some big difference between individual and team coaching

Coaching usually refers to a one-to-one relationship characterised by how the coach listens – the mechanism that creates engagement - the questions they ask to focus attention on future solutions, and a process that embodies a drive to action.

Teams can also be coached but in this case the external role is considered more to be a facilitator than a coach. The process is also different.  There is a need to constrain or direct the conversation of the team with a ‘big energising question’ (BEQ) of the type “How can we increase student engagement by 20% over the next 12 months (measured by etc.)?”  The team itself can formulate this goal through several iterations.

The next step in coaching, focusing on the current situation, is usually minimised: the coachee knows it, the coach doesn’t need to know it. In team coaching it can be one of the biggest activities, 40%, say of a workshop, as all the members of the team need to come to a common understanding of the current situation.This is achieved through multiple, structured conversations amongst team members.Such conversations build mutual understanding and trust.

Charles Conder - Rickett’s Point - 1890

Charles Conder - Rickett’s Point - 1890

Once there is a common understanding, then the next step is generating possible activities that would lead to answering the BEQ. This can be a structured brain-storming.

Activities can then be prioritised, and the most valuable ones become projects. Team members volunteer to staff the different projects and each project team develops a plan: clear goal, specific actions assigned to different team members, waypoints, etc.

This ensures that the team does work that each team member values to achieve an overarching goal that is meaningful to everyone.


John Corrigan is an expert in helping individuals to bring their whole of mind to their daily life and increase their effectiveness and the effectiveness of those around them. This expertise scales from the individual to the team to the organisation. At the core of this work is the practice of encounter.  Earlier blogs can be found here.

·       To purchase a copy of Red Brain Blue Brain go here

John Corrigan