How to Boost Team Performance With Leadership Development

Using leadership development to achieve high-level performance.

When answering the question, What impact does coaching have on team performance?, Erickson College International faculty member Lynn Skotnitsky replies without hesitation: “Ultimately and ideally, a high functioning ‘leaderful’ team is created – a team that can manage itself and make my role as a coach obsolete.
Kim Leischner, also a trainer at Erickson Corporate International, adds that individuals strengthen the team as a whole. “One of our objectives,” she says, “is to uncover each person’s strengths and skill sets, which may not be readily apparent in the workplace due to time constraints and the rush to fulfill daily duties.”
The more individual strengths are understood and valued, the more effectively a team can operate. “The thing to understand is that true teams don’t happen just because people work together,” says Skotnitsky. “Instead, teams are developed over time with great value placed on the different/diverse abilities of each member, in addition to having them function as a collective.”
Skotnitsky and Leischner use various techniques during coaching sessions to achieve high-level team performance. Skotnitsky notes that initially, she acts “a bit like an air traffic controller in that I oversee a lively dialogue and encourage everyone to listen closely to what each other says.”
Modeling is another technique used to improve team performance. “I may ask someone to envision their ideal work culture and environment,” says Skotnitsky. “We also discuss good team experiences and reflect on the elements that contributed to those experiences. By understanding the multitude of ways we co-create powerful team dynamics, positive outcomes can be replicated.”    
The cumulative results of coaching exercises are often dramatic: “People never fail to tell me they’re happier and more productive – truly productive,” says Leischner. “What this ultimately means for a company is increased job satisfaction and retention. In other words, the positive impact of good coaching is enormous.”

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