Executive Team Coaching

Leveraging the Available Intelligence for Desired change

How can you most effectively draw-out and utilize the intelligence that exists within an executive team, to bring about change?

Executive teams tend to comprise high caliber people - yet team effectiveness often fails to match up to the capabilities of the members.

Executive teamsSometimes team effectiveness is limited by norms encouraging over-emphasis on the relatively concrete aspects of problems (such as KPIs, structures, systems and policies), on task-work, and on formal authority – in other words, on the

A challenge is to build the team’s capability for leadership-mode action as well.

Building Team Capability for Leadership Action

Don Dunoon works with executive and senior teams to enable them to reach more of their potential, to better achieve their goals, and to improve their collective and individual performance. Don assists the team to improve its ability to raise, explore and make decisions about issues in ways that encourage diversity of thinking, surfacing and testing of assumptions, reflection, and disclosure of thoughts and feelings that otherwise might remain unexpressed.

Drawing on his ARIES framework, Don helps the team and individual members build their skills in areas such as raising threatening issues while minimizing defensive responses, dealing constructively with disagreement, inquiring into the deeper issues, and building collective understandings.

Team members gain proficiency in intervening with colleagues and others to build shared understandings about contentious issues and emerging possibilities as the basis for change.

A Focus on Actual Strategic and Business issues

The sessions are strongly grounded in the actual work of the team; they are not simply training programs but rather strategic thinking and action sessions.

Don typically works with the team in monthly sessions of one to two hours as the team deals with actual strategic and business issues. He balances teaching, coaching and facilitation roles to help the team become more aware of how it currently operates and more adept at utilizing different approaches according to the situation at hand.

These sessions can be undertaken either face to face or via web-and-phone conferencing.

Such conferencing means that Don can virtually join with the team wherever its location for a portion of its meeting. Apart from ease of access and efficiency in use of time for all involved, these sessions offer virtually the same benefits as face-to-face sessions.

Benefits for the Team as a Whole

As a result of this work, members and others are likely to perceive the team as increasingly capable of:

  • Conversing productively about the issues that it needs to deal with
  • Surfacing and scrutinizing “hidden” mental resources, such as unnamed assumptions, implicit interests and feelings, and knowledge that otherwise might not be shared
  • Drawing on and utilizing the contributions of all members
  • Examining rather than dismissing or “shooting down” controversial or unorthodox perspectives
  • Balancing efforts to create shared understandings with action to advance change and progress the organization’s goals
  • Making substantial progress on the important challenges it faces. 

Benefits for Individual Members

Individuals gain through becoming increasingly capable of:

  • Working from observable data (as well as informed experience) rather than relying on untested inferences, assumptions and attributions
  • Viewing contentious problems/issues – those for which there are no established protocols, and which are viewed differently by stakeholders – from multiple perspectives
  • Using inquiring skills to learn more deeply about other viewpoints on contentious problems
  • Speaking up on contentious problems in ways that reflect a more encompassing perspective and that give voice to hidden or otherwise non-spoken aspects
  • Finding creative syntheses of disparate views
  • Demonstrating leadership in contributing to the achievement of the organization’s goals
  • Balancing the leadership and management components of their roles
  • Developing the leadership capabilities of other employees.

To arrange an obligation-free online meeting between your executive team and Don Dunoon, contact Don using the form on this page.

The Experience of One Executive Team

"Don has made a significant contribution to the management team at Link-Up QLD coaching us toward operating as a more cohesive, higher functioning leadership team.  Through the ‘Leadership Mode’ model we have been able to tackle the complexities of operating a state wide Aboriginal Corporation with greater poise and professionalism.  Don’s alibility to grasp the essence of an organisational problem and find a sensible and holistic way forward is remarkable.  He has shown cultural sensitivity in applying his model to the Aboriginal way of doing things.  Our socially focused mission has been better served through his influence."

Dr Melisah Feeney
Link-Up (Qld) Aboriginal Corporation

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