A little help from our friends can propel our career

We humans are social creatures. Most of us are driven by connections with others, and we know from a great deal of research in the field of adult learning, that we learn best when we do it together. 

We’ve written about The Power of Social Learning in the past. This time, we drill down into group coaching. 

Navigating our careers, pursuing personal and professional growth, and building new skills and behaviours is a complex, lifelong undertaking. There are countless avenues to explore, which is great, but it can also be overwhelming. How can we know how best and most efficiently to gain the capabilities we need to get us where we want to go?

Coaching is a highly effective approach to individual development. Group coaching - coaching that takes place with a coach and multiple people - can be transformative for everyone involved, including the group as a whole. The power comes in many forms; here are a few.

Diverse Perspectives and Insights

A primary advantage of group coaching lies in what participants bring to the table; diverse insights, ideas, perspectives, challenges, and experiences. In a group setting, individuals from different backgrounds, industries, and life experiences share, allowing the entire group to enter into discussions full of various viewpoints. Diversity like this sparks creativity, opens up new possibilities, and provides greater understanding of our individual and shared challenges. The coach and the participants contribute to each member’s learning. Group discussions can lead to fresh insights that might not have been unearthed in a one-on-one coaching scenario.

Shared Accountability

When group members are committed to each other’s learning as much as their own, a sense of shared accountability emerges. When individuals work towards their own goals within the supportive community, they are more likely to stay committed and accountable to their growth. The group dynamic creates an environment that leads to increased motivation and a higher likelihood of achieving learning goals. There’s nothing quite as motivating as knowing there are people rooting for you.

Accelerated Learning

Learning is accelerated in a group setting because participants benefit from the collective knowledge and experiences of the entire group. As an individual overcomes a particular challenge and shares it with the group, others learn from their insights. The group becomes a dynamic learning system where knowledge is shared and amplified, leading to quicker progress for each participant.

Enhanced Emotional Support

Committing to personal development and taking action to make change can be taxing on our time, energy, and emotions. Group coaching provides a safe space for individuals to share their challenges, fears, and successes with peers who understand and empathize. An effective coach will place emphasis on establishing a culture of psychological safety and vulnerability, so that everyone feels comfortable and so that trust is built amongst the group. The emotional support that comes from knowing others are facing similar struggles, and they have your interest at heart, can be immensely reassuring. The shared experience of group coaching creates a strong bond among group members, fostering a sense of belonging, and reducing feelings of isolation.

Skill Building and Networking

In a group coaching setting, participants not only gain insights into their own development, but also have the opportunity to observe and learn from others. Apart from specific career or role development, every member has ample opportunities to build their communication, leadership, and interpersonal skills - all in a low stakes environment (off-the-job). Additionally, networking opportunities within the group can lead to valuable connections and collaborations, opening doors to new possibilities, both personally and professionally.

At TallTrees Leadership, we offer group coaching, both with intact teams, as well as within our cohort-based Leadership Between The Lines development program.

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