What is a Coaching Community of Practice?
What is a coaching community of practice?
First and foremost it is a place to learn. In a community of practice we have like-passioned people who understand the ‘vocabulary’ of the topic and are in a colaborative relationship together.
In other words…we get people who are interested, know what they are talking about, and are willing to help others…to share and learn from one another in a special context.
A Description from One of the Pioneers
Definition: A group of people who share a passion for something they know how to do and who interact regularly to learn how to do it better
Purpose: To create, expand, and exchange knowledge, and to develop individual capabilities
Coaching: a developmental strategy that enables people to meet their goals for improved performance, growth, or career / company enhancement
Community: the relationships among members and the sense of belonging
Domain: area of shared inquiry and of the key issues
Practice: the body of knowledge, the methods, the cases, the stories, the tools, and documents
Who is my community
What are the different layers
What practices is the comm engaged with
What is the domain the community shares?
How can we connect
What are the issues are we facing?
Are they willing to learn together over time?
Will it be considered valuable?
Will they have time to interact
Is there a community already working
Can our company offer support?
It is about Them / The Community
They thrive on participation and relationship
Identity…is a crucial element
Shepherd their evolution
Combine Design elements
A Sense of Aliveness
Value is the key
Many levels of participation
Orchestrate activities in both public and private contexts help develop community spaces
Communities emerge through interractions rather than designs
Gain their Richness, Complexity, and Opportunities for learning occur through
Multi-generational structures & member pathways for movement through the community
-Let people think
-Sometime they need prodding
-Key: In the end, the success of the community will depend on the energy that the community itself generates, not on an external mandate
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO MAKE A COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE THRIVE?
A Critical Role:Community Coordinator
A number of studies have found that the most important factor in a community’s success is the vitality of its leadership. The community coordinator is a community member who helps the community focus on its domain, maintain relationships, and develop its practice. The coordinator’s time — typically 20 to 50 percent—is frequently funded through a dedicated budget created for this purpose. Community coordinators perform a number of key functions:
- Identify important issues in their domain.
- Plan and facilitate community events. This is the most visible aspect of the coordinator role.
- Informally link community members, crossing boundaries between organizational units and brokering knowledge assets.
- Foster the development of community members.
- Manage the boundary between the community and the formal organization, such as teams and other organizational units.
- Help build the practice — including the knowledge base, lessons learned, best practices, tools and methods, and learning events.
- Assess the health of the community and evaluate its contribution to members and the organization.
Effective community leaders typically are well respected, knowledgeable about the community’s domain, well connected to other community members (they know who’s who in the community), Ken to help develop the community’s practice, relatively good communicators, and personally interested in community leadership.
The Role Hermann and I will play in both oversight and training. We will serve as moderators, facilitators, coaches, and participants…all to try to keep us on track.
***The information on this page is largely from Cultivating Communities of Practice, Wenger, McDermott, Snyder, 2002. Especially pages 80-81
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