The Training Course named “Coach Your Team by Coaching Yourself” took place in Ravnogor, an idyllic village in the South of Bulgaria this autumn (22-29 October 2019). Bringing together more than 10 countries, its aim was to expand the participants knowledge of diverse methods for coaching / learning / teaching activities. A variety of topics was covered: coaching and mentoring, communication and learning styles, goal setting, conflict management, teamwork and leadership, group dynamics, honesty, excuses and lies people tell and games people play.
The program offered a wide range of demonstrations of different one-on-one coaching techniques. After each demonstration, the participants had the chance to try out the techniques and methods on their own, working in pairs or trios, enabling them to experience each of the techniques in the role of a coach, a coachee and an objective observer. This was followed by group discussions.
Apart from the one-on-one techniques, some group indoor and outdoor activities were organized within which the participants could experience many of the concepts of teamwork and leadership mostly through body movement and non-verbal communication and rarely through verbal communication.
Throughout the whole training course a consistent support was offered. Each of the participants had their own buddy (other participant) they could talk to whenever they needed. Additionally, each of the participants was part of an international 5-member coaching group that met each night and provided reflection of the past day and a safe space to share anything. Furthermore, the trainers that led the daily sessions were available each evening for consultations.
In the last part of the training, one of the program days was dedicated to simulation of actual coaching sessions. Each of the participants participated in two coaching sessions: once as a coach and the other time as a coachee. It brought many valuable insights for each of the participants, either about the problems they discussed in the role of a coachee or the way they guided their coachees in the role of a coach.
All this formal and learning part was accompanied by the non-formal evening part, when the participants played card and board games, danced to music or simply spent the evening chatting with each other.
And after returning home, we had disseminating activity at the MladiHub space. It was fun sharing the learned tools to my peers, as seen from the picture below!