by Jeremy Keeley
‘Focusing on ‘business as usual’ is at best myopic and at worst suicidal.” (Hawkins, 2017)
First, we need to accept there is a new normal.
One that makes sense if we accept the premise that we have an online presence and we need to be maintaining that online presence; not every team can come face-to-face, so your development activity should model your reality.
The new normal gives us the chance to interact as a team like never before to build the fundamentals of a strong team.
Like really clear purpose and ambition, founded on a strong bedrock of trust.
With shared mechanisms for effective working, like shared mindsets, attitudes, values, principles, and boundaries.
Every business wants a shared team structure imbued with shared ambition, because then everyone feels part of a business and cares more about it.
So, let’s see how online team coaching can make that happen.
Creating the roadmap
Let’s sketch out what things we need to get a business to its required destination and how online team coaching can help us get there quicker and more easily.
To reach key business objectives like being a better leader with a better team, shared learning online can help us by not miring workers in the nitty gritty, by cutting through the usual mundaneness of face-to-face meetings to face routine and thinking more strategically with a new group dynamic.
There is a contract, similar to 1:1 coaching, that has a simpler group dynamic allowing teams to explore important questions like, what is their relationship with each other? How does it enable or get in the way of their effectiveness?
A specialist coach like myself, can bring this group dynamics expertise into team coaching. I introduce models the team can use, for example around difficult conversations or really listening to each other. The focus is still on learning and development; but not only are they paying attention to themselves but they’re paying attention to everybody else and how they are interacting with each other.
This helps create a consistency in behaviour, a key component of great leadership, as the team embraces the online process without it exhausting or frustrating them, making them braver in this brave new world.
Where will this roadmap take us?
Peter Hawkins, the oracle on leadership team coaching, comments that, top teams need to collectively work together to allow their organisations to be ‘future fit’. Never has this been more pertinent.
We can arrive at a more efficient business model via shorter, more focussed video sessions, that allow teams to feel like they are in the same room, so relationships are easier to establish. Remote working shouldn’t mean a business where workers are remote from each other
More focused, smaller, shorter sessions deliver a more agile workforce; a decision-making frame might even work better in short bursts with a proper setup and review process per decision (I have developed a process over the years which I would be delighted to share with you, please email for further details).
Bite-sized chunks provide effective breaks for reflection and setting participants up for real listening, whilst problem solving could use a ‘solutions’ focused approach, which is ideally suited to be done remotely and on-line.
Psychologically, a virtual team has many benefits as long as there is a good basis of psychological safety. Online team coaches can use their expertise in this area to develop psychological safety online, helping people feel safer in their own environment, more relaxed and more forthcoming.
Creating psychological safety can work better amongst a virtual team. It is possible that some aspects of psychological safety are better enabled online because the coachee is sitting in their own space, surrounded by their own things, able to get their own drink.
Voice-to-voice is less distracting than face-to-face; 1:1 telephone coaching (not video coaching) can be incredibly effective. When you just listen to the voice, without watching the other person, they’re not distracted by being watched, they ‘let go’.
On the phone you can really hear an emotion you can’t always see face-to-face.
You don’t have to worry about looking like you’re listening, you can just listen. You can really get immersed in the client. With most of my coaching clients, I suggest at some point during a session that we turn our screens off and really talk to each other.
Also, the building of psychological safety first is critical teaching team members to have challenging conversations online.
For more practical business reasons online coaching is more cost effective, team coaching is cheaper per person than 1:1.
There are no travel costs or travel time, your coach doesn’t need to travel either so saving costs and reducing carbon footprint.
Its more flexible too, no time out of the office travelling, we can work with you wherever you are around the world, we can more easily schedule to work with you whenever you want.
How a FTSE100 company benefitted from virtual team coaching
‘..virtual team coaching is both an art and a science. Research shows that virtual delivery is effective to transmit information and if followed up by 1:1 coaching, it transforms this learning into action.’ – Pam Van Dyke (2016)
We’re experts in virtual team coaching and have many successes. For a copy of Aziz coach Jeremy Keeley’s full article which sets out
- Jeremy’s approach to virtual team coaching
- advice on pre-, in- and post session support
- how he’s currently coaching a FTSE100 company online who have had a small team working hard throughout the pandemic while the majority who have been furloughed are now returning to work
- how to counterbalance the lack of real-world interaction and create strong relationships online
Please click here for more details or email email@example.com
How your company can benefit from virtual team coaching?
Here is some virtual team coaching you cannot afford to miss.
To help support leadership teams over the coming months, we are bringing together a number of L&D professionals to engage in a virtual roundtable discussion, facilitated by Aziz coach Jeremy Keeley, our seasoned team coach, who has been retained by many FTSE 100 top teams for his experience of large-scale business transformation and cultural change programmes.
We will discuss these extremely positive findings and offer you the chance to discover how your particular business can benefit from roadmaps like the ones discussed here.
We will also be discussing as well how you can overcome the lack of face-to-face social interaction that comes with networking in todays’ real world.
Do let us know
- if you want be involved in the discussion
- would like a copy of the main findings
- or want to discuss your own particular requirements
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org today for more information.
We look forward to hearing from you.