Executive Coaching vs Team Coaching

Why is there so much focus on executive coaching vs team coaching?

The real challenge is ensuring that the team is pulling in the same direction and delivering win after win for their organisation.

Executive coaching vs Team Coaching

I recently had the opportunity to talk to a Venture Capital Group about how we could help accelerate their investment returns, by guiding the leadership teams of their start-ups to achieve organisational fitness (more about this later!)

One of their first questions was, who is our competition? We were able to respond confidently, that we see very little competition, being one of the very few qualified to deliver Patrick Lencioni’s methodology in Europe.

This was met with two responses

  1. Who is Lencioni? We have now established, that although used by 78 of the Fortune 100, Lencioni is one of the best kept secrets in Europe. This clearly gives us a job to do to evangelise.
  2. Even more significant, they considered Executive Coaching (which exceeds a $1B market and is continuing to grow) the way to propel their investments forwards. This made me think, hence my question.

Why is there so much focus on executive coaching vs team coaching?

The real challenge is ensuring that the team is pulling in the same direction and delivering win after win for their organisation.

When a football, rugby or any team coach are asked to coach a team to win, they don’t start with coaching the individuals and then put them all together and expect them to just get on with it.

They start by watching the team play together. They guide the team as one and then if anyone needs specific support around skills, they work at the individual level.

So, the question really is, why is this not happening more in business? What is the point of coaching executives if they are not aligned behind a common purpose and pulling in the same direction. How can coaching individuals have the desired business outcome?

It is unquestionable that the rate of change required for organisations to stay ahead of the competition is faster than ever.

Organisational Agility – McKinsey

In a survey published last month by McKinsey they cite the eighteen practices required for Organisational Agility.  Thirteen of these are people related and there is an emphasis on people aligning to a vision and working in cohesive teams. All the people elements required for Organisational Agility are covered in the very straightforward and pragmatic Lencioni methodology.

To my mind the McKinsey report clearly highlights the need for the collective, versus individual, yet the market for executive coaching is growing and Western Europe’s market is only a couple of % off the size of the North America market.

Is it because team coaching is perceived as too difficult?

Which brings me back to the point – that Patrick Lencioni’s methodology based on the Five Dysfunctions of a team is little known. There clearly is a job to evangelise just how simple and practical this methodology is to understand and put into practice, based on the interdependent building blocks of;

  • Five Behaviors ot a Cohesive Team Model graphicVulnerability based trust
  • Productive conflict
  • Commitment (Not consensus)
  • Peer to peer accountability
  • Collective results, to ultimately deliver business growth

It really is the operating system for teams and with the Amplified Group’s mission of Transforming Talented Individuals into EXTRAORDINARY Teams, it is exciting to bring this proven methodology for teamwork to Europe.

The Amplified Group are one of just a handful of European partners accredited to deliver this methodology. But we have not stopped there!

Organisational Fitness

We’re breaking the rules ‘just a little bit’ to extend it to Organisational Fitness – defined as the alignment of an organisation behind a common purpose, creating urgency, working persistently towards each milestone, milestone after milestone. Just like our own fitness, organisations need to work to maintain Organisational Fitness and stay ahead of the competition. This starts with an organisation’s core, the leadership team and then scales out.

Recommended Reading

If any of the above resonates with you, I would strongly recommend you start by reading Patrick Lencioni’s ‘The Five Dysfunctions of a Team’.

Written as a fable about a tech start-up, it is unlike any other business book I have read. Quite simply it is a page turner, highlighting the very simple but often missing team elements required for sustainable business growth.

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