ctedu logo
Open Menu

Coaching to Flourish #099: Why Team Coaching?

January 28, 2024 by Coach Training EDU

Listen to the Podcast

Be Curious!

Raj Anderson and guest experts answer your coaching questions each week!

Join hosts Raj Anderson, MCC, and John Andrew Williams, MCC as they delve into the intricacies of team coaching and the business aspects associated with this evolving field. We discuss the subtle yet significant differences between team and group coaching, and unravel the empowering dynamics that make coaching effective on a larger scale. Don't miss the discussion on building confidence, handling challenges, and the exciting frontier that team coaching represents in the coaching landscape!

CTF 099 YT Thumbnail
Play Video

Live Transcript

Raj Anderson: [00:00:00] we are live welcome everyone to the coaching to flourish Podcast and I'm your host Raj Anderson executive life coach and coach assessor And as always I'm excited to be here with John Andrew Williams, who is the founder of coach training edu How are you John? I know there's been storms and things or electrical challenges today.

How is it going for

John Andrew Williams: you? Better now that everything is now working again, it felt like it got off to an interesting start to the morning. And yeah, it's amazing how much we rely on this technology now, but I'm really grateful. It's working grateful to be here and happy January, mid January everyone.

Raj Anderson: Yeah, it is.

And it can be quite disruptive content. As you said, we rely on technology and when things start to go off or haywire, how do you stay grounded in those moments,

John Andrew Williams: John? I don't know. I don't know how well I did. I got a team meeting that I prepped for. I prepared stuff. And then it just went, I mean, I could barely get on with the phone.

That's how it went. So I don't know. I think part of it is trying to understand, okay, so what is, what, what does the mission need of me right now? Like, okay, this is this happening. It's happening here. It is what, like, what is, how can I be useful is I think a question that I find myself asking a lot in situations like this.

It's a lovely question. It's a grounding question. It's a question that I think orients away from my personal perspective, more towards the larger mission of what we're trying to accomplish.

Raj Anderson: I love that. How can I be useful? So I know we have some themes and things to talk about. I mentioned last week, I was super excited.

There's been some fantastic workshops happening from coach training EDU. And I went to the word of the year one with Hannah, which was just beautiful. It

John Andrew Williams: was amazing. It was amazing.

Raj Anderson: It was amazing. And we all know, I mean, Hannah's outstanding anyway. And, but she just created this fantastic environment [00:02:00] for all of us.

It was a large group of us on there and she created this great space, you know, with pause and an opportunity to reflect. And I mean, what was lovely for me was to just be able to be a participant. I was there being a participant and just enjoying being led through some real deep coaching. So I really enjoyed it.

I would encourage anyone who's listening to look out for these kinds of workshops. And I just took so much insight away from that. And I'm excited because there's another workshop coming up on Thursday with you, John. Can you tell us a bit about that?

John Andrew Williams: Thank you. Yeah. I'm, I am looking at the ICF's newest accreditation with team coaching and we're, we're diving into it, diving into the theory of team coaching, what it looks like to do coaching with a team.

And then one of the questions that has come up recently from people who are asking about it is about group coaching and what are the similarities and differences between team coaching and group coaching. Uh, and if you are interested in group coaching, like what does that look like? And I think, I mean, in looking at, you know, the ICF, like, what, what they're, what the ICF is trying to do is provide structures and systems for if you're working with this specific population.

These are the guidelines. These are best practices. And basically when you're looking at team coaching, the main guideline is how do you treat working with the team in a similar way that you would treat working with an individual, which is empowerment. So literally how do you empower teams? And the answer is remarkably the same.

You do it through curiosity, but when you're working with the team, you have to also have a little bit more structure. And so the ICF is doing this interesting dance between being an instructor leading a bunch of people through a workshop, like what Hannah was doing. Yeah, that's a masterful group work.

You know, where you're leading, you're [00:04:00] leading a group of people through an exercise, a common exercise, where every individual has an experience, the difference between group coaching and team coaching is team coaching would take that experience and ask, okay, how do we want to work together as a team to accomplish this?

Common vision when you're working with the group is how do you want to take what we've done together and to use it individually in your own life? So that's the key difference, but it's the same process.

and then also the business aspect of it too. If you're really interested in the business aspect of team coaching group, working with groups, what are some of the best practices we've seen, what works well, that's what we're doing Thursday.

Raj Anderson: That's really helpful, John. Um, just listening to you and the difference between, you know, the team coaching and the group coaching often gets confused, doesn't it? Like people can get. Those two ideas and concepts confused. Um, who should be coming to your workshop on Thursday? Who, who is it for what type

John Andrew Williams: of coaches?

Uh, it's coaches who really want to stretch their coaching abilities and also open up the opportunity of adding working with a group or a team to their coach service offerings. Like that's if you're, if you ever thought, yeah, I could, I totally want to do this when you're working, like offering coaching to more than one person at a time, this is that, you know, and for me, when I came at coaching, this is almost 20 years ago now, as a teacher, you know, looking at, I was used to working with groups of people and then I found coaching.

I thought this is amazing because it's one on 1, it doesn't really exist anywhere in education where you would work 1 on 1 with someone unless you're. You know, competing or there's something wrong. And, but this is, this is different. You know, this is a different kind of communication. Now what's fascinating for me about taking this one on one coaching work and then applying it back to a group of people.

It's well, how do you maintain that container of what it's like to work one on one, but to bring that to a [00:06:00] group, you know, especially to bring that to a group of people who have a common goal. And, That to me is amazing. When you think about the, we'll talk like the technology of communication that coaching offers.

It's very exciting.

Raj Anderson: So what can be the impact of either group? I mean, take them individually. What would you say is the impact of? Teen coaching, like why is it important for us to learn about it?

John Andrew Williams: Yeah, I think it's, it represents like, okay, from like a coaching field standpoint, I think what it does is it represents one of the frontiers of coaching, which is if you're looking at the coaching model is based on curiosity, empowerment, how do you apply that to a larger group of people?

That's. That's interesting. You know, uh, another thing about team and group coaching is from a pure business standpoint. Let's say you're working with a group of people and they don't want to pay for an individual coaching session. You can offer a lower rate to a larger group of people, still make a living as a coach, but and have an extra offering that more people can have access to.

That matters. That, that has social impact. So it's not just You know, for your sake of your business, but also how can you become a more effective coach to a larger number of people? That's, that's, that's what this work is about.

Raj Anderson: Yeah, I enjoy, I've enjoyed group coaching myself a lot being a participant in it.

Even if I think about, um, as I said, word of the year workshop that I was in, and we were a group and we were in deep coaching, we were individually. working through and reflecting on things, yet hearing from other people gave me light bulbs. Um, so there was that, uh, John calls it borrowed insight. There was that inspiration.

Yeah, it also helped me with when I've been in other sessions, not feel [00:08:00] alone, you kind of have commonality. With people as well, hearing them share their vulnerabilities and their journey. Um, and I've heard that a lot from sessions that I run with groups as well. What are your thoughts on that, that kind of shared environment?

John Andrew Williams: I love borrowed in. I mean, just the concept. I was just talking about this last night too. There was a coach I was talking with, and she was sharing her experience working with clients, how she'll, she gains a lot as a coach sometimes, you know, working with the client thinking, Oh, I I'm, I'm in the same thing.

Like, you know, let's find out more together, you know, that kind of, uh, experience. But yeah, I mean, the idea of, you know, a borrowed insight is when you're a coach and you're working with the client and the client has some insight or some amazing breakthrough as a coach to take a piece of that and to apply to your own life.

It's a borrowed insight, um, the, when you're working with a group of people, I think there's permission in this space. It's like when you see one person have a breakthrough or one person take, uh, a mental emotional risk where they, they make the leap that gives permission for other people to make the same or similar leaps in their own lives.

It's a really powerful thing when, uh, a skilled practitioner creates a space where that's safe to do. And there are some guidelines, I guess, that teachers, you know, go through when you're working with classroom management guidelines. One of the big ones, for example, is say you're a teacher, you're leading a group of people, and something comes up, like, you know, you get challenged in some way, and you feel like you have to win the group, you have to win the, You know, you know, their trust, they're asking, how are you going to take this?

Because how you treat that one person who might be challenging, uh, an idea you have, or it might be hard, like how you treat [00:10:00] that one person is how the whole group is going to feel. And it's a crucial moment. It happens a lot, especially let's say we are an executive coach and you're working, you know, you're entering a group of people and, you know, people have interesting ideas about what it is or isn't like to work with the coach.

You might get challenged right away. How you deal with that challenge is absolutely essential. Uh, and that's, for example, one of the things that we'll, we'll cover and talk about. I'm curious about your own experience. I'm sure this happened to you. What are some of the ways that you have as an executive coach approached when people challenge you in this space?


Raj Anderson: I was thinking about that as well because I do a lot of group coaching. I do a lot of one on one and a lot of group coaching sessions. So less of the team, more of the group coaching, you know, specific leadership topics. And curiosity is the biggest gift, is asking a curious question back. But also designing the alliance is really important.

So if it's a program, a group coaching program. That you have created or and I've created and say, we run like six months or 12 months group coaching programs is making sure that there firstly is an alliance created at the beginning around that growth mindset, safe space, vulnerability, judgment. I open it out so people can add their own.

Um, but you do, I mean, it's normal to get people to resist the process. In, in, in the session, uh, and I quite welcome that actually, because, uh, it expands my skills and my growth, otherwise it's, it gets easy and I find that I'm not growing. So I do want to encourage anyone who's listening and might be feeling a little bit unsure or under confident around, I really want to do group coaching, you know, go and check out and listen to John's session and think about the program because it's going to help you build.

Your confidence in that. But I think, ask a curious [00:12:00] question back. That's what I do in that situation. Get really curious about, uh, that resistance. Or what, what is it that is bringing them to that point? And I, and I think it's not taking it personally. Cause it's not in that moment about me. It's not about me.

It's not about my value add and the inner critic can get into your head at that moment and think you can start thinking, Oh my gosh, am I not adding value? But I think if you go from curiosity, you can release that pressure because it's not about us in that

John Andrew Williams: moment. Yeah. I feel like being a teacher or a group leader.

That's huge, is not taking it personally. Exactly what you're talking about, Roger, like, that inner work of almost welcoming it. Like, yay, here it is. Here's the channel. Here we go. You know, like, it's, it's now real, everyone. We have everyone's attention. You know, are we playing or what? You know, like, where are we at?

And then I think there's an element of When the group feels you're like the leader, welcome it. Like what you're talking about. I feel like everyone like breathes a sigh of relief, like, okay, good. Exactly. Yeah, it's not taking it personal. It's all going to be okay. Everyone.

Raj Anderson: Yeah. Not taking it personal, letting that go, asking those curious questions back.

And sometimes I've had resistors and it might not be, you know, as, as lovely as, as you want to ask a learning and being question. Um, I invite people in, in that moment and just say, well, what can we, what can we do differently? What would you like to see differently? What suggestions do you have? And sometimes people don't, I

John Andrew Williams: mean, it's not their job.

I mean, sometimes yes, sometimes no, I mean, I, I, I love when, when someone challenges or they're, you know, there's someone in group who comes up and says, you [00:14:00] know, they will push her. There's see what happens is to get on their side for a bit and say, yeah, you know, like if they have to be there, like if everyone is there because they have to be there, speak to it, like, yes, you're here because.

You've been asked to be here and not to make whoever did the asking wrong, uh, or, uh, more just to express what is like, yeah, this is, this is what's happening right now. We're here. We might as well make the most of it. Uh, or, you know, to go into even, even more to like, okay, so how I can. And what do you want to get out of the next hour?

Like, what would really be useful for you? A lot of this comes into the design of even how this workshop or other group even comes together. So a lot like we found, especially like, let's say we do group training at universities. If we ask a few very specific questions about who's going to be there, how people have been told about it, uh, what's the process that they're being picked, like, you know, and have avenues where we can.

Communicate and give people enough of a heads up ahead of time that solves so many of, of the hardest challenges later on that come up. It's a little bit of pre framing a little bit of, you know, helping people know what to expect can go miles and helping that the rest of the program is successful. So, I mean, a lot of it is set up as well.

And then when the challenge does happen with the setup, you have more things to fall back on. Say, Oh yeah, remember we told you this, like this is where it's going to go. You know, this is why we're here. How do you want to use it?

Raj Anderson: Yeah. Yeah, what I'm hearing from you then is that reframing, set up, talking about those expectations.

Um, there is this piece around not taking it personally and letting [00:16:00] go. And we circle back around to that question. Right at the beginning, you were asking yourself today, you know, what's most useful? And even asking that simple question in the session, what would be most useful? For you is so powerful. Um, so John, I'm thinking, what if there's somebody who's listening right now and they're like, Oh, I really want to get into group coaching.

I really want to get into team coaching. Um, I feel like I've only just started to really get to grips with my one on one coaching skills. And I feel nervous about whether I should do this or not. What, what words of wisdom do you have for them today?

John Andrew Williams: I don't know. You just do it. Come to the workshops, try it out.

Uh, and I think that the harder part, so anytime you're working with a team or group or thinking about coaching in general, I think there are two specific challenges. The first is getting your, your skillset, you know, developing the skillset to do the thing, deliver an amazing product or service. I think to me, that's the easy part because that's something that you can, you can control.

It's something you can practice at. And everyone has, you know, general ability to become an amazing coach, especially when you lean into curiosity. You know, you do a lot of the fundamentals correctly. The skill sets will come. It just takes practice. So that that's me. I feel like most people are very stressed about.

Well, am I good enough to do this? The answer is absolutely yes. It takes practice. I've been there. I spent two years in coach agony of, you know, trying to figure out what, you know, what was a good coaching session? How could I co like, you know, so it was painful. Uh, and I feel like a lot of what I designed in this program came out of that [00:18:00] pain to help other people avoid the pain as best as possible, but there might not be any way around it.

You got to get through the awkward coaching stage. You can do that through practice. Second problem is marketing, coaching, doing the business side of group coaching. To me, that's the harder of the two problems and understanding like what you're really offering in a group coaching session is vital. Like people also want to be connected to other people.

They want to make lifelong friends and coaching in these workshops are opportunities to. Do that. And so I think understanding the marketing of it, uh, the, the efficacy, the guidelines that the ICF has, the theories behind it, and all of these kinds of things offer a lot of confidence that enables you to do both of those goals.

With more confidence. So if you're thinking about, you know, is this for me? Is this not for me? I hope that helps. Like if you, if you feel like you want to offer this as part of your offering, absolutely. Yes. And there's a credential around it too, which is really sweet. So the ICF does have a credential specifically for team coaching.

We'll explore that.

Raj Anderson: Okay. I'm excited about this one. I think I'm gonna. See if I can come to one of these sessions and and hear more. I like the fact that you're saying, you know, there is there is a credential around this as well. I would encourage people because it really does help to build that confidence, doesn't it?

When, you know, you, you learn that confidence, you build it in a one on one, but it's very different when you are in that group environment. So is there anything else you would add in terms of the team coaching aspect. I suspect there's going to be the themes that go through it in your course, but anything else, John, you would share on differentiators around group coaching and team coaching?

John Andrew Williams: Yeah, it's fascinating. I think that with, when you're working with a team, well, I mean, it [00:20:00] all depends on the setup. I think when you're working with a team, the How you set up the coaching differs from when you're working with a group in terms of marketing it, but the marketing is, I mean, there are similarities and differences and I think they're actually instructional.

This is a really helpful thing to do when you're looking at 2 different or 2 or 3 different fields asking, you know, what is the similarities between coaching and therapy where the, where the difference is being, you know, where the difference is when you start looking at. You know, uh, 2 different fields from that standpoint, uh, insights emerge, good things happen.

Same with team and group coaching. We understand the differences, why you market team coaching this way, but group coaching that way, where their similarities are involved. Um, yeah, it's just a useful exercise. Ask in general, we'll explore that a little bit. Um, but I'm very interested in the business side of this because that's where I think that a lot of coaches.

I've seen a lot of coaches be successful. I've also seen a lot of coaches founder and understanding how to market this thing is I think half of the, half the challenge of being a successful coach.

Raj Anderson: And is that what we can coaches expect to learn some aspects around business in this

John Andrew Williams: program? Yeah. And I'm leading this one all by myself.

I haven't led a course all by myself in years. So this is also a new thing for me. It's only eight weeks too. So it's not long. I'm going to, you know, just dip a little bit and see if I can manage doing this and keep all the other projects rolling at the same time. But I'm excited. This is something I've been planning on doing for a while.

So psyched to offer it in very Very eager to get this out there. I feel like there's, I want to lay down some good, uh, demo, you know, some, some good video for other classes to use in the future. Which I may or may not lead. I probably won't. I probably won't lead this again all by myself. I do it. Um, but we'll see.[00:22:00]

Raj Anderson: So, final question for you, John, what makes this so important for you to lead and deliver this

John Andrew Williams: program? I miss it when I get I have, uh. You know, I started, I was really into the coaching. I love coaching. I still do. And then training, I love training. And now I feel like I spend 95 percent of my time business building and I love it kind of, but whenever I lead a class or sub a class, I'm just so.

You know, I just feel like, yeah, like the world is going to be okay. Like, this is amazing. Like coaching is mind blowing. And it's every time I just feel like this is, this is a, this is an amazing thing that we're doing. Uh, so I'm excited to get back into that space and I feel like the business building website, building, marketing things.

Like I've learned a ton and I'm very thankful for it. Um, and. Yeah, now I know a lot about business and some really, some hard lessons, some good lessons, but really, truly everything has been a useful stepping point to this point here in the furthering of the mission of bringing coaching to more people.

I'm very thankful to get to this spot.

Raj Anderson: Well, thank you, John. I'm thankful for you. We are thankful as a community. I'm just excited for all these. fantastic opportunities and programs that are coming as well. So thank you for sharing that with us today.

John Andrew Williams: Yeah. And thank you, Raj. It's amazing. So this is Raj Anderson: 99. Yes, we are on our 99th coaching to flourish podcast.

John Andrew Williams: That's fine. That's a goal. That's a, that's a, that's, that's a significant milestone. So next week will be our a hundredth. We may or may not have. an exciting announcement. So

Raj Anderson: watch this space, everyone. And thank you for joining us. And thank you again, [00:24:00] John and coach training EDU for creating this space for me.

Uh, I never ever thought really that we would get to a hundred podcasts together, John, when you invited me in for the opportunity and look at us now.

John Andrew Williams: I know we did it. We, we did a thing. We did a thing and it's, it's going to continue to evolve and I'm very excited for what's to come. Thank you, Raj. It's really fun to do this with you.

Raj Anderson: Thank you. And thank you everyone. We will see you next week.

Raj Image for CTF

Our weekly Coaching to Flourish Live is the perfect place to learn more about coaching. It’s a great resource for new coaches to get their questions answered and join the conversation about all things coaching. It’s also a great supplement to your coaching education toolbox. Submit your coaching questions to support@coachtrainingedu.com or message us on Facebook.

Join us each Tuesday Live on Facebook at 11:30 AM PST | 2:30 PM EST.

The Coaching to Flourish podcast is currently available on SpotifyAppleAmazonOvercastPocket CastsRadio Public and Anchor.

Transform your journey with
Coach Training EDU