All teams come across different challenges in the workplace. Some of these issues can be resolved with a quick discussion or team meeting, while others can be a little trickier to overcome.
Some of these more challenging issues can creep their way into your team’s workflow – damaging productivity and team success. These issues can sometimes act like a virus, going undetected until it’s too late and you experience your team performance crumble before your eyes.
A team coach gives teams the tools to identify and work through these issues before they become a bigger problem.
So what are the early signs that your team needs team coaching?
Your team isn’t hitting targets
A team is greater than the sum of its parts. While it’s a bit of a cliché, this statement couldn’t be truer when it comes to high performing teams. While individual talent is one of the key ingredients for driving company results, it doesn’t necessarily translate to the team hitting important workplace targets.
Team success relies entirely on effective collaboration. Take sport for example. An outstanding soccer player would not be able to succeed without the help from their team. A team coach can help teams overcome difficulties so that they can collaborate more effectively, work more productively and reach their targets.
There’s a communication breakdown in your team
It happens in all workplaces. People have different communication styles, some of which don’t blend easily together. This doesn’t mean certain members of your team are doomed to work in confinement. This simply will not work.
For a team to work at optimum performance, there needs to be clear and distinct lines of communication between every member of the team. Think of these lines of communication like electricity lines in a power grid. If lines are missing between members of your team, certain people will be left in the dark. Lack of effective communication can lead to misunderstandings and frustration among your team members. It can inhibit productivity, hamper morale and damage your overall team performance.
Team coaching helps teams communicate directly and efficiently so that teammates can work better together and improve team results.
There is a feedback gap
Constructive feedback is one of the most important tools that individuals and teams can use to work through challenges and improve results. While this is true, a really common workplace issue is the absence of regular feedback among teams – both positive and constructive. Feedback is best given frequently and to every member of a team in order for it to be effective. A coach will work with teams to streamline the way feedback is given (and received) so that individuals can work more constructively together and achieve team objectives.
Morale is low
Low morale can occur for many different reasons. Whether it’s personality differences within your team, an absence of transparency or a lack of forward progression, low morale can result in a major dip in productivity levels. It also often results in higher turnover rates which can cause companies to incur huge unwanted costs.
A team coach can help every team member feel ownership over their own success and the success of the team. This feeling of accountability helps to give team members a drive to succeed. It does wonders for team morale and can improve workplace results. A team coach will also give your team the tools to communicate more efficiently, build trust and improve engagement.
There’s tension in your team
Negative tension between members of your team can be extremely harmful for a number of reasons. It can draw focus away from important workplace tasks, hamper morale and damage employee engagement. Even worse, it can result in your best talent heading out the door.
While conflict isn’t inherently bad, when it isn’t addressed or resolved, it can interfere with a team’s workflow and inhibit success. Team coaching helps with conflict resolution and more importantly helps the team understand why a fear of conflict within the team can be detrimental to top performance. A coach will give members of your team the tools to identify conflict and address it head-on so that tension doesn’t brew and become a bigger problem than it needs to be. A coach will help each person in the team optimise their own communication skills and formulate strong lines of communication so that tension can be aired and overcome.
Our team coaching programs generally consist of a 6-12 month process that develops a team’s capacity to deliver measurable business outcomes and a self-sufficient approach to steer its ongoing development. In our experience, team coaching works best with newly forming teams, or when the membership of a team changes significantly, or when an existing team wants to ramp up their performance or reinvent itself to meet new business challenges.
About David Leahy
David Leahy is the Director of Directions Unlimited, a specialist consultancy providing people solutions of every shape and size – from JobFit assessment testing, behavioural interviews and outstanding managerial tools to executive one-to-one coaching, team and group coaching programs. David “gets” business having worked for more than 30 years with multinationals and SMEs. An accredited organisational coach, he possesses a broad coaching experience having coached at CEO and Senior Executive level in the USA, South America, Europe and Australia.
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