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Getting started with Coaching Ourselves

Coaching Ourselves Collaboration Culture Renewal Henry Mintzberg Peer to Peer Learning by Jeffrey Beeson

Coaching Ourselves - the peer-to-peer learning process - combines state of the art management content with the benefits of social learning. This approach provides a cost effective way to develop people and is easy to implement.  Your business can take the following three steps to introduce this process into your organization:

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1. Test it with a team

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If you are intrigued by the concept of the Coaching Ourselves approach by Henry Mintzberg - try it out.  Select a team for a 90 minute practice session.  The team consists of four people  (which is an optimal group size for a learning experience) who are accompanied by one of our experienced Ensemble Enabler facilitators.

There are 80+ modules to choose for this 90 minute Coaching Ourselves practice session.  These modules address a wide range of management issues from basic management skills to crafting strategy.  An appropriate module is selected for the test team in advance of the practice session.

Our Ensemble Enabler facilitator guides the team through the 90 minute session and encourages a lively exchange among the participants.  At the end of the session, participants note down their learnings and the action steps they wish to take.

This practice session enables both the team and your organization to experience the value added of Coaching Ourselves' unique approach to people development first hand.

2. Pilot it with a group

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If your organization liked what it experienced in the practice session, the next step is to try Coaching Ourselves with a pilot group. This group could be a department such as HR or Marketing or a project team.  To see the systemic benefits that Coaching Ourselves offers, it is optimal to choose a group of 20+ people whose work requires a certain amount of collaboration with each other.

Three appropriate modules are selected for this pilot group out of which learning groups are formed.  For example, a  pilot group of 20 would consist of five learning groups each made up of 4 people.

The learning groups meet once a month for three months to discuss one specific module per month. As a result, all 20 people discuss and experience the same content. Individual members of the learning groups benefit from learning the new material. Moreover, the pilot group as a whole benefits from a mutual  learning with one another. This group learning typically feeds into their everyday interactions with one another.


3. Launch a Peer-to-Peer Learning Program

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Having seen the impact on the pilot group, the next logical step is to scale-up to a full Coaching Ourselves by Henry Mintzberg program.  A larger pool of employees is targeted during this scale-up phase.  Six modules are typically selected and internal facilitators are certified to conduct the sessions.

By initiating such a program, the organization benefits from the individual learning which takes place. During this process the peers who come together to learn on a regular basis also contribute to a shift in the organizational culture.

An additional benefit of a Coaching Ourselves program also potentially occurs in the area of internal communications. Learning groups that meet together on a regular basis form a core of an new communications channel.  As employees accustom themselves to come together to learn as a group, they may want to organize extra sessions which are exclusively dedicated to discuss the implications of changes occuring within the company.  Ensemble Enabler supports organizations to effectively capitalize on this emerging channel.

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With so many potential benefits, why not schedule your first practice session today?

Recognizing the power of providing small group learning experiences at all levels of an organization through the Coaching Ourselves process, Ensemble Enabler offers this experience to organizations as a certified Partner of Coaching Ourselves by Henry Mintzberg.

About Author: Jeffrey Beeson

Jeffrey Beeson

Jeffrey Beeson is both the founder and CAE (Chief Alignment Enabler) of Ensemble Enabler. He brings his wealth of experience in strategy consulting and leadership development to bring systemic approaches and solutions to bear on an organization's most complex challenges.