Daniel Taylor June 4 2024

Mastering Team Coaching for Maximum Impact

Mastering team coaching requires a strategic approach and a commitment to fostering a positive and collaborative team environment. By setting clear objectives, fostering open communication, developing trust, facilitating effective meetings, and encouraging continuous learning, leaders can maximise the impact of their team coaching efforts. The result is a more cohesive, engaged, and high-performing team capable of achieving remarkable results. By implementing these strategies and leveraging the right tools and techniques, leaders can unlock the full potential of their teams, driving success for their organisations in today’s competitive landscape.

 For several years now, I have been running team coaching sessions in its many guises. I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. When done well, participants find team coaching a valuable opportunity to step outside of the business day-to-day and focus on their own challenges. 

There are a number of factors which contribute to its success which I’ve learnt over time, and these can make or break the experience, so here are some thoughts:


For those involved in group coaching, it is important that they turn up in the room knowing what the purpose is; this may sound obvious, but the mindset required to take part in a great coaching session differs the from those who are expecting a ‘training session’. Many leadership programmes nowadays combine knowledge and input, often via facilitation, supported by separate opportunities to reflect on learning and apply its principles to real-life situations.

This requires proper context setting and preparation by those delivering the coaching and, crucially, those involved in it. Participants need to arrive in the room with a level of curiosity and willingness to share what has worked and not worked for them. Some reflection questions beforehand should prompt them to undertake some personal reflection and bring in both successes and challenges which they have experienced.

Get the tone right:

Coaching requires vulnerability, a curious mind and willingness to change. All of these need an environment which is psychologically safe (Tim Clark). Group coaches need to set up the sessions, accordingly, ensuring maximum levels of inclusion, learner, contribution, and challenger safety. In some cases, this requires participants to be relaxed and comfortable with each other. Hence, it is a good idea to keep group coaching cohorts intact (if there is to be more than one session) to ensure familiarity. In the case of intact team coaching (i.e. where the participants know each other already) the group coach also needs to manage the dynamics which already exist. Be aware of roles and hierarchies which already exist. The coach should also position themselves as an independent non-expert voice in the room and not be at the centre of the activity. Being frequently in these situations, I am keen not to take centre stage so things like chairs, positioning and physical environment become very important. Being conscious of when participants are addressing their colleagues, rather than me, is also a key consideration.

Balance Support and Challenge:

I see this very simply; as a coach you oversee two levers; one is support, the other is challenge. Like caterpillar tracks on a tank, both engaged equally drives you forwards. Too much of one and not the other leaves you spinning around in circles. Ensuring the balance of questions in aid of either is critical and checking that listening is at its optimum are both conditions which we should continuously observe and address if necessary!

Be action and outcome focused:

Group coaching needs to extend beyond the realms of a cosy chat, or a rant about the System. Following a clear framework as in a one-to-one session is just as important. This can be helped by using a framework such as the GROW model with the group. Many are familiar with this as an individual coaching structure, but it works equally well as a meeting framework. Sharing example questions at each stage will ensure the conversations stay on track. The group coach can take charge of keeping the structure intact, as many will become over-focused on this rather than listening and asking good questions. It also helps to appoint a ‘question lead’ with each rotation so participants stay on track. Concluding the session with defined actions or next steps, getting each participant to declare what they commit to can ensure that they are accountable for their next steps.


To find out more, why not download our brand new eBook 'The Collective Advantage: Group Coaching Solutions for Organisational Success'. 



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