“What teams need is not formulas or simple solutions. They need team coaches who can help them navigate complexity as safely as possible and surf with them and then get out of the way.”
In a chat with Dr. Kelly Whelan about some of the unique features of the Complex Adaptive Systemic PERILL point of view on Team Coach Education, I said something that was, perhaps, worth quoting. Working closely with the Core Faculty and Professor David Clutterbuck as Head of the CASP Practitioner Programme for GTCI and the CMI network, we have resisted oversimplification and formulaic approaches to working with teams. It can be scary for team coaches to embrace the uncertainty and discomfort that our Complex Adaptive Systemic approach embraces. But, coaching is all about the skilful partnering with Teams. Teams are Complex Adaptive Systems within Complex Adaptive Systems nested within Complex Adaptive Systems. We need, as Team Coaches, to meet them where they are and our discomfort is real and not always useful.
When we talk about our work, we do not pretend it is anything other than what it is. An image that might be helpful is: Team Coaching often feels like your are holding two cocktails… in one hand – a concoction that includes confidence, grounding, tools, and experience… and in the other hand – a volatile mixture of uncertainty, wicked problems, the unknown and all of their accompanying fears.
The highly skilled CASP team coach is able to hold these extremes without tension, embracing the imbalance and ride the waves in service of the team’s (their clients) greatness.