The Centre for Solution Focused Practice

Coaching & Organisations

The BRIEF team have been at the heart of the development of Solution Focused practice in Europe since 1989, helping to maximise performance by releasing potential. BRIEF offers both training and consultation. Courses are run in the Solution Focused approach to leadership and coaching, whilst consultation includes personal coaching, group coaching and team coaching. Solution Focused Practice is future focused, resource-based and progress sensitive. It is generally experienced as empowering, helping to build a sense of possibility based on evidence of achievement.

The ideas at the heart of Solution Focused Practice are remarkably simple, straightforward and supremely pragmatic. The practices themselves give participants a way of putting to work some of the most current ideas about organisations and what makes them work well. Lasting success in any arena cannot be built or sustained on the leader's energy alone. Indeed, as recent research by PriceWaterhouseCooper shows, a 'too dominant' leader is one of the key causes of an organisation's failure. Sustained success requires that the energies of all the team members must be directed towards a vision that takes account of the aim of the organisation and the legitimate interests of all key stakeholders in that organisation's life, including of course not only the work team but also the customers. The Solution Focused approach is based on the development of such a shared vision that can serve to mobilise the very best that the staff team has to offer.

Solution Focused Coaching

Maximise effectiveness and well-being in your team and organisation with BRIEF

BRIEF Coaching is a sure route to fulfilling potential – yours and your organisation’s
BRIEF Coaching will increase performance and drive you towards your goals
BRIEF Coaching creates a powerful alliance between the organisation and its members
BRIEF Coaching builds confidence and motivation: the foundations for effective action

Solution Focused Performance Conversations

BRIEF Coaching uses powerful Solution Focused tools, developed by research into what works and stripping away whatever is not a necessary part of the change process. What is left is a lean, straightforward and purposeful conversational structure. BRIEF Coaching uses time well – even 5 minutes in the middle of a busy day can make a significant difference. BRIEF can teach you and your managers how to use this structure to transform your work

Who is this course for?

This course is for anyone who wishes to develop a set of Solution Focused conversational tools that can be drawn on flexibly in management, consultancy, coaching, appraisal and even informal conversations with colleagues and friends.

 These tools fit well for

  • managers and leaders
  • coaches working with senior staff
  • performance coaches
  • sports coaches
  • life coaches
  • parent coaches
  • teacher coaches
  • school-based coaches

 

The programme

During the programme you will learn specific transferable skills for directing purposeful conversations. This will be an active process in which participants deal with the real issues they are facing at work. Expect to be stretched, energized and, at the end of the day, tired.

The programme will address

  • using ‘preferred future’ questions to develop a purposeful focus
  • bringing to light hidden resources
  • scaling for progress
  • building collaboration and motivation for change
  • dealing with difficult situations
  • working with conflict
  • shaping conversations to maximise effectiveness.

 

Solution Focused Leadership

Introduction
In our rapidly changing, and increasingly demanding operating environment successful organisations require flexible, engaged staff teams made up of ‘leaders’, individuals willing and able to take responsibility within their areas of accountability. Senior managers are being challenged to work differently, to find new ways of bringing out the best from their reports. Questions rather than instructions are now regarded as the more appropriate currency of management and a capacity to coach is seen as a pre-requisite for both emerging and established leaders. The importance of the ‘soft skills’, the people skills, is being recognised and forming productive relationships with others is seen to be inextricably connected to ‘bottom-line’, whether ‘bottom-line’ is framed in terms of profitability or key performance measures. This shift is challenging leaders to develop and strengthen a new skill-set, indeed to think differently.

Solution Focus, originally designed as a brief and effective approach to resolving problems, offers leaders and managers a flexible set of techniques which can be used in conversations with individuals, in working with teams and in meetings. The approach has been utilised effectively in project management, in supervising and managing staff, in mentoring and coaching, in staff appraisal, in conflict resolution and in strategic planning.

Leaders and managers have identified the key characteristics of the Solution Focused model, strength-based, future-focused, building on success and progress sensitive and put them to work. As a result of adopting Solution Focus as a ‘default position’, leaders and managers have brought about a shift in organisational ‘culture’, in the patterns and style of communication, that the organisational research associates with greater happiness, productivity and cooperation at work.

Training overview
This two-day event will be active and experiential, inviting participants to apply an appreciative, solution focused framework to themselves in their leadership roles and to those around them and with whom they work. The programme will enhance familiarity with the complementary Appreciative Inquiry and Solution Focused methods whilst also focusing participants on an appreciative exploration of their own best approaches to leadership and management and their best hopes for themselves moving forward. The programme will in addition support participants in identifying some of the resources that will help them to be successful in progressing and building successful and productive teams.

Some core themes
Amongst the core themes in this two-day programme are:

Recognising strengths and potential
Picturing a preferred future
Building on success
Leveraging individuality

Distributing expertise
Sharing credit
Highlighting progress
Building flexibility and engagement

Each of these themes is connected with the goal of facilitating an energised, flexible and adaptable, high morale, high creativity organisation that will seek to make the best of the strengths and the capacities of every one of its ‘members’.

Methods and outcomes
Both days will be structured around a series of activities with work in pairs, threes, fours and whole-group discussion. The presenter will introduce the work to the group in a way that will enhance participants’ clarity regarding the thinking and the rationale underpinning Solution Focus and Appreciative Inquiry. There will be wider references to ideas that are currently emerging from the fields of Positive Psychology and Positive Organisational Change. Each participant will be expected, after the programme, to be confident and able to make use of the training in their own work settings whether in coaching, mentoring, team coaching, supervision, planning and more generally within the field of organisational change. It is expected that participants will leave the programme clearer about their own approach to leadership/management, familiar with a structure that can be applied generically to change management, as well as more appreciative of the best of their own practice, the best of their colleagues’ practice and some of the facets of the future to which their organisation might aspire.

Training Facilitator
This workshop will be led by Evan George. Evan is a founding partner at BRIEF, the world’s leading Solution Focused training organisations. BRIEF was established in London in 1989 and has been uniquely influential in shaping the direction of the development of the Solution Focused approach over the past 15 years. Evan has also been particularly interested in the wider application of Solution Focus and in the field of Building Cooperation. Evan is co-author of three books and many articles and chapters on the Solution Focused approach. Evan has taught and presented his work across Europe and further afield from USA to UAE.

Solution Focused Coaching

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Solution Focused Leadership

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Blog

How can we think about the client’s ‘best hopes’?

There are things that continue to puzzle me about the Solution Focused approach – not just interest me but really puzzle me. And the main one that I find myself thinking about over and over is to do with the client’s response to the ‘best hopes’ question. How should we think about the client’s response, what name should we give it, and how should the client’s answer be connected to the rest of the work? Evan George shares some very provisional thoughts.

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