We specialize in helping adults work well together
A team that works well together sounds so simple. Simple is hard. When talking about their challenges, most leaders identify some human element an opportunity for improvement. The human element influences how we trust each other, how we collaborate and problem solve, and ultimately how we achieve our goals.
The facilitators at North Star Coaching have the advantage of seeing things from outside of the team dynamics. As outsiders, we can call out the elephants and behaviors that are detrimental to the team's success more directly and objectively than a member embedded in the team.
North Star Coaching partners with leaders to help their teams build strong foundations, capable of weathering any challenge. We love capturing our team building with this picture, below, of a home being build in the Caribbean. The scaffolding is in place while the foundation dries, and when that work is done, this house can stand up to any hurricane.
An Analogy: Working with Teams
It's funny how people are in teams - we often behave like we do when we are with family. This concept of teams and families is best described through this analogy: Let's say Michael is sick. When he wakes up, his sister asks how he is feeling. Michael complains a bit, but puts on a brave face and goes to work. At 10:00am, Michael realizes he needs some professional help.
Michael goes in to a walk-in clinic and to the physician, a complete stranger, is describing all sorts of gross bodily functions, his fever, and every other detail we feel comfy sharing with strangers, but less-so when it comes to family.
In that same space, team members are more likely to be vulnerable to an outsider over someone in their team (or family). That's where Kerri helps. One of her talents is helping teams be vulnerable, identify what they need, create that psychological safety where innovation and problem solving can thrive. Once teams establish the norms to keep these healthy spaces alive, Kerri transitions on to the next team that can benefit from this expertise. Kerri's goal is that you "graduate" from needing her. Teams invariably have the talent and skills to do the work. They just get caught in the day-to-day spin of pressures and demands that it is hard for them to slow down to really articulate what they really need to thrive.
When North Star Coaching comes to support your team, Kerri acts more like the physician. She pokes and prods, asking vulnerable questions in ways that the family member has difficulty doing. In short, Kerri helps teams efficiently find their synergy.
North Star Coaching's goal is to help teams thrive and maintain that success. How do we get to that good healthy spot?
Putting Words on What We Want to Be
Healthy teams have clearly established and agreed-upon norms, values, behaviors and beliefs. As represented in the visual below, healthy teams are a circle, with every member of the team fitting in that circle. Understanding the norms, values, behaviors and beliefs helps everyone get in to the circle. Knowing the team's norms, values, behaviors and beliefs creates a sense of belonging and psychological safety - essential to any high functioning team.
When teams are re-formed, through situations like an addition of a new team member, changes in roles, mergers, or (you guessed it) pandemics, several competing teams (or circles, represented below) begin to struggle. As you can see from the visual below, when everyone is not in the same circle, competition, discord and dysfunction emerge. Said simply, the lack of focus and agreed upon norms, values, behaviors and beliefs reduces the success of the team.
North Star Coaching specializes in helping teams identify those behaviors that are hindering and helpful. Ultimately, we help teams achieve ambitious outcomes.