What a Team Needs: Before Finding a Team Coach
How a team will transform as a unit post-coaching depends on the competency and approach of the team coach. While that is essential for team coaching, the commencement of the process should be preceded by the prep phase.
What Should a Team Have Clarity About?
Before initiating the team coaching sessions, the team should have clarity regarding three things:
- The present state of the team.
- Where the team wants to reach or what it wants to achieve.
- The team’s clarity about its requirements.
The present state of the team can be clarified by following the five disciplines of high-performing teams:
- Commissioning – To ensure or commission a clear purpose of the team and what it needs to deliver.
- Clarifying – Clarity regarding the primary purpose of the team, their roles, and collective objectives.
- Co-creating – Fostering a healthy team culture through the creation of interpersonal relations and team dynamics.
- Connecting – Engaging and collaborating with all stakeholders.
- Core-learning – Forge an environment of continued coordination, consolidation, realization, learning, and integration.
The next step is defining “what success looks like” for the team. You need to envision the success or end objective to achieve it.
Defining the Specifications for Team Coach
Once the team reaches the point of clarity, the next stage is defining the specifications of a team coach. It is more like clarifying the areas where the team needs help from the coach. Here are a few questions that would help a team reach their conclusion in the matter before team coaching starts:
- What should be the range of coaching?
- Do we need the coach to help us with all the disciplines of team coaching?
- What role should the team coach play?
- What style of intervention would be best for us?
- What should be the range of experience of the team coach?
- Do we need the coach to conduct individual coaching or group sessions, or both?
- What would be the extent and nature of the individual sessions?
- Do we need an in-house coach or an independent practitioner?
- Do we have internal or in-house team coaches in other departments of the organization?
Finding the answers to these queries together as a team would help in determining the role of the team coach.
Next Step: Selecting the Team Coach
The selection of the team coach from a list of suitable candidates can be determined by a simple questionnaire, as follows:
- What kind of team coaching do you offer?
- What is the approach towards building high-performing teams?
- How do you make it happen? What model do you follow?
- What different kinds of teams have you worked with in the past?
- How have you helped those teams achieve the desired levels of performance?
- What training and credentials do you have in team coaching?
- How much time does it take for you to work with teams?
The answers to these queries should be enough to figure out which candidate is best for team coaching.
These steps enable the team to transform into a stronger and self-sufficient unit by leveraging the techniques implemented by the team coach. It’s almost like cooking, where the fresher the ingredients, the tastier the food!