creating space for collaboration and teamwork

This post is not about cubicles or office layout!

Rather it is about creating space for people to be authentic and collaborative … all at the same time!  I learned more about this in a recent  The Coaching Stance class   … with Lyssa Adkins, Michael Spayd, Cynthia Darst, and David Chilcott. The first day Cynthia and Lyssa were our “front of the room teachers” while Michael and David “held the space” and the second day Cynthia and Michael were our “front of the room teachers” while Lyssa and David “held the space.”  And the class unfolded I bcan to get a much better sense of what it could mean to “create and hold space” for people. At work and at home. Just by watching and experiencing the environment created.

In her book on “Coaching Agile Teams” Lyssa talks 16 times about “space” …  Here’s one quote: “When you coach you nurture an environment that  “holds the space” open for the team to create.”

I am noticing now that some of my friends and some of the leaders that I most respect seem to do this naturally. And here is what the “this” of “holding the space” looks like for me:

1) Make it safe for others to speak

2) Welcome and thank people communicating bad news early

3) Say “we” when processing  “bad news”

4) Acknowledge people’s contributions

5) Respect others in the space (the group, the meeting)

6) Ask with curiosity, then wait expectantly

So happy to be able to practice this with some great role models nearby!


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3 Responses to “creating space for collaboration and teamwork”

  1. Phil Ruse Says:

    Yes, yes and YES to no. 1 on your list! Creating an environment where all are able to speak and *feel* able to speak without fear of censure or ridicule… leads into 2 and 3 and your other points 🙂

  2. margaretmotamed Says:

    Thank you Phil… being a new learner to the world of coaching it is especially nice to receive your comment!

  3. Be a collaborative leader, part 3 « Agile Dreamer Says:

    […] 9)      Create (mental and emotional) space for teamwork. A)  Welcome and thank people communicating bad news early, B) Say “we” more…especially when taking credit!, C) Say “I” when taking a failure bow, read the rest of this post here […]

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