Ever consider group coaching or mentoring to engage and grow leaders in your organization? When women come together in a circle miracles happen. Communities prosper. Women are empowered. Change happens for the better. Whatever we can envision together, we can make happen together. This is my belief. It is also part of our DNA and how our brains evolved. Research shows that women tend to best cope with stress by “tending and befriending” vs. the “fight or flight” response experienced by men. In our early history we gathered together around fires, sharing stories to teach and pass along wisdom, to support each other, to participate in rituals and rites of passage, to celebrate life and death.
Now we gather together in conference rooms, online communities, Starbucks, and church basements to connect, to relate, share hobbies, and to work on common goals. It could be for mentoring, for a cause we believe in, or simply to lose weight. Circles are part of our DNA. Thanks to Sheryl Sandberg’s book, “Lean In Circles” are everywhere. In my coaching work, I often work with organizations to help them to get group coaching and mentoring circles started. The objective of a mentoring circle is for a group of leaders to come together to help each other grow in their leadership, and support each other to meet goals.
Here are five rules for leading a successful mentoring circle (thanks to the persistence of Colleen, one of our blog community participants who asked for this).