Tips for Trainers and Coaches

Help others acquire the Solution Focused Team Talk Skills that you learnt about! The settings for this could be a:

  • workshop or seminar
  • team mentoring session
  • community of practice
  • 1-on-1 conversations
  • stand-up meetings
  • solution-focused retrospectives
  • any daily conversation that you have with your team or individual team members!

A step-by-step introduction works best

People learn best one step at a time. Therefore, if you have the opportunity of working with a team on a medium or long-term basis, introduce them to the 15 skills one by one. Start with the skill that best meets their current needs. For example:

  • If they have trouble starting meetings with a clear focus on outcomes, introduce them to the best hopes questions and its different variations.
  • If you feel they need a switch from a negative to a more positive mindset, teach them the Positive Assumption.
  • If they have trouble visualising concretely their future or the outcome of a particular project, introduce them to the Preferred Future, the Miracle or the Tomorrow Question.
  • If they need to learn to listen to each other better, then teach them Constructive Listening.

If there is no specific need, then you might as well adopt the order in the book, moving from general to more specific skills.

Spend some time teaching and getting people to practice the skill, with (affirming and corrective feedback from you and the other learners. After that, let them practice and work with the newly acquired skill for a while in their daily lives. Next time you meet, invite sharing of stories, experiences and successes.

Introducing the 15 Skills in a Workshop

What if you have only limited time and want or need to introduce all the skills to your team members at once?

„Teaching is learning twice.“
Insoo Kim Berg

Let each team member pick one skill and read through the material on it. Give them some time to prepare a session presenting what she has read to her group. Ask your participants to present the material in a way that is interactive and memorable for the others.

By teaching the content will most likely stick much better with the presenter herself and she will most likely have more fun than just sitting and listening to you. Also, there is greater variety both in methods and presenters, which makes your workshop session more fun and memorable.

Impersonate the skills

You might also like to ask your participants to pick one skill and impersonate it. Ask them to think, act and talk like the figure they are representing during short scenes – such as a meeting, a conversation with a customer or a boss, or something of their own invention. Be sure to have fun doing that!

Should you feel that some important points have been lost, you can always simply add them as a trainer, or impersonate a skill yourself and demonstrate this point.

Be inventive – there are many ways!