Last week we discussed how peer-coaching groups can be used to maximize your team offsites. To recap, peer coaching groups are small groups of managers helping each other improve their practice of management through reflection and dialog. Today, let’s delve into the nitty gritty – exactly what makes peer-coaching groups so effective at building these highly productive communities of practice.
What is the the secret – the key – to successful peer-coaching groups? It’s the CoachingOurselves modules. Our modules are designed by world renowned management and business thinkers and combine high-quality content, questions, and exercises around a specific theme. Peer-coaching groups are guided through 15-20 pages of content over 60-90 minutes that stimulates reflection, learning, and skill building to promote change. The CoachingOurselves modules are the crux that propels a peer-coaching session from run of the mill coaching to true action learning, where people work on real problems, take action, and learn as individuals and a team to improve the organization.
Our modules are designed to be used in the workplace. Here is a group of managers using peer-coaching in their manufacturing facility in Mexico.
You’re now probably curious – how exactly does a CoachingOurselves module work? It’s deceptively simple. In short, participants just follow the instructions:
At a closer glance, each page of a module has three components: content that promotes learning around a specific theme, questions to catalyze self and group reflection and dialog, and a prescribed time to complete the page. Participants read each page and follow the instructions for the exercises exactly as written and when the time is up they move on to the next page. Modules combine high quality content with a very simple process that leaves breathing room for discussion and reflection to create high impact results in just a few pages!
Not convinced it really can be this easy to enhance the effectiveness of your peer-coaching sessions? The image below explains how the CoachingOurselves modules make learning and change happen. This process was first introduced by Professor and CoachingOurselves co-founder Henry Mintzberg in his 1996 International Masters of Management Program and forms the basis of peer-coaching:
“Thoughtful reflection on natural experience, in the light of conceptual ideas, is the most powerful tool we have for management learning.” – Henry Mintzberg
What happens when organizations run a peer-coaching group without a CoachingOurselves module? They have a typical coaching program, and while this is still powerful, it will be missing the scaffolding provided by our modules to bind learning to your organizational needs and focus participants on a specific theme to generate effective outcomes. Isn’t that what everyone is hoping to gain from peer-coaching sessions?
Once real concepts and pedagogy are introduced to a session, organizations see big outcomes! Peer-coaching programs guided by our modules:
- Are aligned with organizational needs
- Have a curriculum that promotes learning – and learning how to learn
- Develop a common language across program participants
- Have a structure that supports specific learning goals and action outcomes
CoachingOurselves modules are simply and lightweight, with just enough content and structure to guide effective learning and change for individuals and within organizations. They are the component that makes peer-coaching groups so incredibly successful. CoachingOurselves modules generate:
- Learning Impact: Participants improve their skills and become teachers on the job
- Action Impact: Managers drive change within the organization
- Reflective Impact: Participants become more open-minded and reflective, and gain the capacity to deal with complex issues.