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COACHING TEAMS OF TEAMS

How do we apply what we’ve learned about coaching teams to coaching multiple, interdependent teams, to teams of teams? David Clutterbuck reports   Just as focusing on individual performance doesn’t necessarily lead to improved collective (team) performance, high performing teams don’t necessarily work together to deliver a high performing organisation. In his book, Team of Teams, retired US Army General Stanley McChrystal offers examples of how functional silos within organisations or even within departments can undermine performance overall. Every increase in the efficiency of a narrow slice of the organisational system can reduce the effectiveness of the whole. These insights aren’t completely […]

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TROUBLESHOOTER: EVERY MOVE YOU MAKE

Two members of a leadership team are concerned about the stuckness of their organisation. So why is their CEO continually shutting down their concerns? The Issue Stephen and Jane are well-respected members of the leadership team of a public sector organisation in the UK. They’re in agreement that their organisation, while generally regarded as operating well, has stopped ‘moving forward’. In particular, they feel the management group at both senior and middle levels needs further investment in their leadership skills, and support in becoming more adaptive, for example. The chief executive (Karen) is someone they both respect deeply. However, their […]

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ABB: A GLOBAL JOURNEY

ASEA Brown Boveri (ABB)’s coaching style OD ‘mentoring’ programme is bringing about a shift in culture and organisational growth. Dr Eunice Aquilina reports It may be helpful to draw distinctions between coaching and mentoring. In reality, I wonder if the name really matters, particularly if an intervention is succeeding. Certainly that’s the case with the programme I’ve partnered with ASEA Brown Boveri (ABB)’s L&D team to design and deliver for the past eight years. Although it has the look and feel of a coaching programme, it’s actually an OD intervention aimed at cultivating a leadership culture. It’s called the Global […]

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GROUP EFFORT

Internal coaches are in a unique position to bring their experience to bear in groups, supporting dynamic and truthful conversations that lead to organisational change, says Sara Hope As internal coaching becomes more embedded in many organisations, sponsors are increasingly looking for ways of capitalising on the value of employing a cadre of internal coaches. Working with a group is different to a one-to-one coaching relationship, and some may argue it uses a different skillset. It requires an appreciation of one’s self and one’s impact within the system. It takes an exquisite ability to be prepared to question and challenge […]

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Body Talk

A recent survey found that nearly three-quarters of you are members of a professional coaching organisation. But for those of you who aren’t, confusion still reigns. Liz Hall brings clarity with an in-depth look at what’s on offer.

Professional bodies aren’t everyone’s cup of tea but as coaching buyers begin to ask more questions about accreditation, standards and ethics, more coaches are signing up. And they are discovering the real benefits to be had.

A recent cartoon by our resident humorist Kipper struck a nerve with many of you, highlighting the confusion that still reigns over who does what. How do you decide what body to join? Which are relevant to you? What do they offer?

Some 74 per cent of respondents to Meyler Campbell’s survey of coaches (see news, page 12) are members of a professional coaching body, up on last year’s 65 per cent. There was no clear leader last year either, but in 2009 the Association for Coaching (AC) pulled ahead by a long shot (59 per cent), followed by the International Coach Federation (ICF; 29 per cent), as shown in Table 1.

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News: Lack of preparation stalls cross-cultural mentoring

Many multinational mentoring programmes are at risk because employers fail to think strategically, adapt their approach to local cultures, or offer participants adequate cross-cultural training beforehand.
These were the key messages emerging from contributions to the multinational mentoring stream in the European Mentoring & Coaching Council’s (EMCC) first ever mentoring e-conference on 16-18 January.
David Clutterbuck, co-founder of the EMCC, said many organisations fail to change. “One of the mistakes I have seen commonly is for the headquarters of a multinational to assume that what works [fits] culturally in the home country is the right way to do it everywhere else. This cultural imperialism often leads to conflict and the abandonment of very effective local programmes.”

Adina Tarry, director of Rich Answers International, who has lived and worked in seven countries, and works with multinationals, said she has never seen a cross-cultural competence development programme precede mentoring, for example. She said businesses have a limited understanding of what cross-cultural experience, awareness, competency and sensitisation are, and do not appreciate that specific preparation is needed.

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News: ‘Sloppy work’ is biggest timewaster

Half of UK employees feel their employer doesn’t help them develop good team working skills, suggests a survey of 2,000 people by training consultancy Cedar. Employees understand their own work contributes to team targets, but one-fifth have never attended a meeting in which team performance was discussed. Four in ten have a manager “who does not assist in resolving conflicts”. This, along with difficult interpersonal relationships within teams, is taking its toll on the team’s overall performance. A third of respondents dread coming into work because of a bad team environment, while a further third believe a tense atmosphere is […]

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News:Executive coaching spreads its net wide

US-based Sherpa’s latest annual survey reveals the value and credibility of coaching is at an all-time high, spreading across the globe and creating corporate cultures

This is the year that high-definition video made its mark on coaching, while the number of practitioners using face-to-face coaching fell for the first time in eight years, according to a global survey.
Webcam, a technology that was hardly mentioned even five years ago, is now an important component of service delivery, with 15 per cent of practitioners using it to coach, according to Sherpa’s eighth annual survey – Executive Coaching at the Summit (www.sherpacoaching.com).
The use of video-conferencing is also rising dramatically. External coaches use it more often than internals, by a 22 per cent to 20 per cent margin. And as live, high-quality video starts to become widely available, it will overtake other delivery methods, predicts the report.
Some 92 per cent of internal coaches see face-to-face coaching as the most effective method of delivery, compared to 76 per cent of externals.
The report has thrown up other differences between how external and internal coaches operate, too. Internal coaches meet their clients more often and have more face-to-face meetings – more than half of internals’ coaching is in person, compared to just 40 per cent of externals’ services, the survey notes.
Internal coaches are twice as likely to have weekly meetings, and strongly favour shorter engagements (90 days or less.) Some 27 per cent of externals believe a coaching engagement should last six months or longer, while only 7 per cent of internal coaches opt for engagements that long.

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Opinion: Ethical frameworks

Ethical frameworks – if only life were that simple by Bob Garvey Many coaching bodies create sets of rules around confidentiality. But if ethics are socially defined, and contextually relevant, how can they be right or wrong? Many professional bodies claim their ethical frameworks reassure potential clients or sponsors, and ensure quality control, standards, accountability and protection. These are bold claims. Given the complex arguments surrounding ethical behaviour, is it possible to deliver on these promises? Are ethical frameworks ethical? Ethics is a moral philosophy in which complex issues of good and evil, right and wrong, justice and injustice, are […]

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Viewpoint; Help or harm?

by Sarah Dale

Does coaching work? Should we use hard evidence or our own judgment to tell us if it’s good? Or is client feedback enough?

As an occupational psychologist who coaches, I was pleased to attend discussions about the evidence for coaching effectiveness at the Division of Occupational Psychology conference, specifically in sessions led by Professor Rob Briner. Evidence-based practice was also the theme of the Special Group in Coaching Psychology’s annual conference in December 2012.

The arguments echo a wider debate, often associated with Ben Goldacre, author of Bad Science, which challenges how we decide what works. They raise important questions about what constitutes good evidence. Ignoring these could put us in the same well-meaning boat as 17th century doctors wedded to their useless (or positively harmful) blood-letting practices. However, few of us work with cast-iron evidence for everything we do. Doctors, lawyers, teachers, parents – and psychologists – all rely on their own judgment at times. As a practitioner, the debate leaves me questioning what I should be doing. I get positive feedback from my coaching.

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