Some businesses struggle with developing strategy, implementing a plan, or even determining the best way of addressing an issue. With the pressure of delivering quarterly results, some companies operate in a continual fire-fighting mode. An ingrained fire-fighting culture can make it difficult for a company to think strategically or focus on the long-term. Skills that are not practiced become dull. When a business realizes it has lost its sharp edge and decides to tweak or change course, engaging a coach may be the best tool to pull out of the business toolkit.
If you are wrestling with a business issue or deliverable and having difficulty getting started or completing it, you may want to contract a coaching facilitator. Coaching facilitators can be used to help companies:
- create high functioning business or functional teams
- develop business, strategic, and execution plans
- solve pressing problems
- build effective processes
Coaching facilitators are typically professional coaches skilled in business, facilitation, human behavior, and strategic thinking. They will help facilitate the journey of the team through team development, problem solving, decision-making, planning, and goal achievement. A coaching facilitator embodies the best attributes of coaching and facilitation and leads the group through a process to identify the issue, bring forward all the information, brainstorm and vet all ideas, decide on a course of action, assign responsibilities, and hold people accountable.
What can you expect from a coaching facilitator? Look for one that will:
- Work with the team leader to define the issue and team composition
- Provide administrative support and facilitate the meeting as well as manage the overall process
- Uncover the team members’ feelings and gut level reactions to an issue
- Draw out the facts and focus the attention of the team on the issue
- Help the team to collect data and brainstorm ideas and solutions
- Ensure full participation of the group members
- Draw out meaningful dialogue to broaden perspective
- Challenge and provide feedback to “group think” behaviors
- Get team to decide on a course of action
- Help team to frame SMART goals
- Motivate and encourage the team
- Help the leader hold the team accountable
Over time a coaching facilitator should help the team operate more effectively on their own, based on the team working through the same general process. The process will become a practiced way of approaching strategy, business plans, and problem-solving. A coaching facilitator can also train selected employees to serve as coaching facilitators for a company’s future endeavors.
About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach and consultant with an extensive background in leadership, business development, and sales. She coaches individuals as well as designs and facilitates workshops. She has a passion to help organizations engage all their colleagues. You can learn more about Sandra by visiting her website at www.shinecrossings.com.