Is team facilitation appropriate for your team or executive board?
Is your board or team functioning at the highest level? Do they have clean and clear decision making processes that allow for disagreement and hearty debate?
Is there shadow elements at play that need to be removed, such as collusion, 'us and them' subgroups, fear about not speaking up, power plays, autocratic leadership, back stabbing, bullying?
Have subgroups formed who gossip and talk in derogatory ways about other team members?
Is it safe enough to say anything within the team or Board dynamic?
How would you rate the level of mutual respect within the Board group or team?
Would you say there is high support, encouragement, edification, within the team?
Does each member take personal responsibility for their own actions, or lack thereof, and also for the collaborative actions of the entire team?
Does the team create the opportunity for learning, development and increasing respect?
We work with all of these issues with your board, team or groups via a team facilitation process.
The process we employ is very much built around a coach approach, which simply means we work with the agenda of the team, versus come in with our own agenda. We have found that when we meet the team exactly where they are, and tackle head on the issues that they are facing as a team in real time, we get the greatest response.
Typically we meet with the Team Leader/Chairman prior to the event, often by telephone, and discuss the issues they are experiencing. We may also interview several members of the team prior to the event, to determine their experience.
Sometimes there are a very defined set of circumstances, like a change in operating policy or a downturn in business due internal or external events. People may be struggling with change.
In other circumstances, the issues are more nebulous and are often due to lack of clarity around agreements, expectations, roles.
We usually start with a one day team facilitation event, preferably off site.
The location is important, as it is critical to get people into an environment that creates openness, new perspectives and the opportunity for reflection.
At the commencement of the team facilitation session we start with a group questioning process to determine exactly what are the prevailing issue that needs to be discussed and resolved.
If the Leader has requested a certain issue, it is important to gauge if the people in the room also has the same view of the issue.
The point of this is NOT to work only with the leaders agenda, or to build a one vote one person democracy, or to go with consensus. The point is to illicit the team process and for the coach/facilitator to determine where the breakdowns are occurring.
The coach is diagnosing the teams core operating systems in the first 30 minutes of the day, using their experience to determine exactly the team dynamic, where they are stuck, what models and tools would be best to use for the day, how the dynamic may be enhanced and what would be the best outcome for the day. They are interested in the best possible team development process and so spend the first 30 minutes or so gathering this data actively from the group. This diagnostic process continues throughout the day.
Once the facilitator/coach has a clear path, they present this as the agenda, and get the agreement of the group to proceed. Again, we do not need full agreement. The coach is observing and working with the group dynamic moment to moment addressing issues as they become apparent.
Team facilitation is a very organic process, with no guaranteed end point. However, we can guarantee that the Board or team will be in a more advanced place of functioning by the end of the day and will have gained some elegant tools and resources to support their ongoing improved functioning and team development.
For many team leaders, team facilitation may initially create a feeling of risk and uncertainty due to its unstructured organic approach. The facilitator/coach will work with the team leader to build confidence in the process.
Sometimes it is important to let the Team Leader/Chairman know that they may be part of a problem and that our job is not to protect them, or anyone, but to support the respectful integration of the team to a higher level of operation, which may include identifying individual behavioural blocks.
Team facilitation is rigorous, educational, exciting and very engaging for all participants. Because we work with what is most relevant to the group in present time, we can cover a vast array of issues and models, from-
*handling the seemingly impossible
*work life balance
*responsibility and accountability
*breaking down internal silo’s
*building a powerful big goal that engages everyone
*determining the values and skills of the team and self
*observing other peoples values and skills and how collaboration may leverage everyone
*creating a win, win, win
*speaking up when it is not safe to do so
*ending gossip, bullying, backstabbing
*how to handle the negative elements in the group
Many times we do ongoing work with the group or board, either as an entire group, or with certain individuals one on one. This ongoing work becomes self evident at the end of the initial team facilitation day. In our debrief meeting we determine the form and duration of this ongoing work.
Benefits of team facilitation and group coaching
*creation of a high performing team
*more rapid decision making
*highly effective processes
*no elephants in the room
*safe environment for people to speak up in
*more enjoyment within the team/group
*strong boundaries and high mutual respect
*simply a better working team
*high levels of responsibility and accountability
*higher levels of team development
*crafting individual leadership development plans
Is team facilitation or group coaching appropriate for your team?
If your team, group or board is suffering from any form of dysfunction, infighting, back fighting, blaming, collusion, broken communication, lost purpose etc, then get help and quickly. Or, if you want your team to move to a higher level of function and performance... If your team has an issue that is creating divisions, or if it needs to create a new road map, or if the environment that the team functions in has changed and is creating stress, then this process will be applicable to you. We work with listed, private and not for profit teams and Boards.
The cost for this level of work depends on the time frame and complexity of the situation, and its ongoing nature. Please ask us for more information.
What people say about the team facilitation process.
Further to our previous correspondence I would like to thank you again for the work you undertook with my team on 30 November.
The workshop was very relevant to my business. As you know many of my team have been challenged by the ongoing effects of the drought. Your understanding and honest approach was very well received by the group. I was very pleased with the manner in which you challenged the group and kept them focused on the end goals.
I believe the success of any workshop can be gauged on the feedback once the participants return to the office. Here we are some 2 weeks down the track and many of the team are still talking about the workshop and more importantly, "staying in the question".
Thanks again and I look forward to continue working with you in the future.
Tony Williams Regional Manager - NSW South West Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited
Feedback from participants who attended the mortgage specialist conference Queensland for ANZ
*Enjoyed more than any other session we have had at conference since we started, I felt proud to be able to speak up and be honest with personal feelings.
*Wasn’t just personal and will help improve our business.
*Quite confronting in a positive way. Made me want to re evaluate my life at work and home.
*Taking a good look at yourself and the values that drive you.
*It is up to me how I approach things we all have a choice.
*Really enjoyed the group conversations and watching people when they realised that they had hidden gifts or that it was acceptable to be YOU!
*She made me think about what and how I was doing things not just in my job but at home as well. When I saw that we were doing 5 hours of personal development I was really not looking forward to it but once we started I really enjoyed being there.
*I felt Christine’s session made us all do a lot more soul searching and our responses were confirmation of that. Thank you for sharing her with us.
*Figuring out that we all have different desires that drive our own happiness as well as understanding the desires of others to better interact with each other.
*Very uplifting and she presented it well.
*Moving and inspiring which helped us join in structure what we needed from it, she gave herself personally to encourage us.
*Get the work life balance right, question yourself regularly, self talk positively when the mountain is looming and look for alternatives.
To get started with team facilitation, please do the following.
1. Email us requesting a meeting to discuss board or team facilitation to be sure this is what you are looking for.
2. We will set up a time for a telephone meeting to discuss exactly what we do and how this will be relevant to you now. This meeting is at no charge. We want to be absolutely sure that this process is for you and that you will get the value you seek from the experience.
3. Once we have agreed to green light the board or team facilitation we set a date for the meeting, plus agree on venue location, and set times to explore the group dynamic further. The frequency of these interactions and the participants required will be agreed at this point. Each group is different, so this is a bespoke process. This will determine the fee for the pre-work and the facilitation, plus any agreed debrief. Subsequent work is discussed as a possibility but not agreed on in principle until after the facilitated event.
4. Pre-work meetings will occur and at all times open lines of communication will be strong between the meeting organizer and the Coach/Facilitator.
5. The team facilitation event will occur, followed by the debrief.
During the debrief we will agree on any next steps.
Questions, please email or call us...