Six Blind Men were asked to determine what an elephant looked like by feeling different parts of the elephant’s body.

The blind man who feels a leg says that elephant is like a pillar; the one who feels the tail says the elephant is like a rope; the one who feels the trunk says the elephant is like a tree branch; the one who feels the ear says the elephant is like a hand fan; the one who feels the belly says the elephant is like a wall; and the one who feels the tusk says the elephant is like a solid pipe.

A wise man hears the discussion and explains to them all of you are right. The reason every one of you is telling it differently is because each one of you touched the different part of the elephant. So, actually the elephant has all the features you mentioned. But together you get the whole elephant, alone just a part.

This resolves the conflict, and is used to illustrate the principle of living in harmony with people who have different belief systems, and that truth can be stated in different ways. It also illustrates that without all the perspectives it is hard to see the whole.

In system thinking, when you put individual beliefs together, a new belief or picture of the whole emerges, that could not have occurred without the compilation of all the others. We call this the third entity. Traditional views of creating teams look at how the individual actions affect other individuals.

“If Bob would just stop ……. we would all be fine.”

This statement, for example, creates a focus on the individuals, and how each of them interacts. The problem comes when you change one behavior and another’s behavior follows suit. After helping change the new behavior, it affects another different person – the chain of events never stops. It is not a simple cause and affect.

Another example is farmers who use pesticides to kill beetles eating their corn crops. Now that the beetles have been eliminated, the farmers feel they’ve fixed the problem. Actually, this individual cause and affect approach doesn’t take into account what other parts of the ecosystem the beetles impact. These beetles actually eat other bugs that would otherwise eat the ears of corn. With the beetles now gone, these other insects now have free reign, and are destroying the corn even faster!

The pesticides affect the pigs that eat the corn as feed, and in turn affect all the products that we might eat. Over time the same situation perpetuates and even worsens.

In terms of teams, in order to find a solution that solves rather that creates a short term fix, we work to bring all the voices of the system into discussion to see the larger idea. The actions that emanate from the larger viewpoint cannot be seen from the individual; therefore, they cannot have the impact necessary to have real change occur. The benefit of looking from the larger view is being able to raise our thinking to the level at which relationship dynamic shifts and sustainable results can occur.

I BELIEVE WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD IF WE START LISTENING TO ONE ANOTHER AGAIN,  AND HAVING SIMPLE, HONEST, HUMAN CONVERSATION. NOT MEDIATION, NOT NEGOTIATION, JUST SIMPLE, TRUTHFUL CONVERSATIONS                                                            ~ MARGARET WHEATLY



Team Systems Relationship Coaching

We have a passion for teams!! Years ago, people were siloed in their workstations. All of the sudden, in today’s corporate culture, we’re supposed to be able to work together as teams. Funny thing about that is that nobody has taught us how to really get along to be the sustainable high performing teams, necessary in today’s global market. We are groups of very different individuals which mean our cultures consistently collide. We show you how to ‘play well with others’. Systems Coaching is based on the idea that teams are interacting parts. We can’t see what really is going with the interacting parts without talking, listening and hearing to all the parts. Teams need to be proactive and see how they contribute to their own results as a whole. At Marsha Marsh Coaching we know as our clients know that predominant trends that have shaped global industrial development cannot continue. We cannot keep pretending our institutionalized habits are working. It is time to change how we think and act. The future is emerging with innovation. Innovation can only happen with healthy, honest conversation.

At Marsha Marsh Coaching we create sustainable high performing teams and transform cultures by having teams:

  • Develop communities of support and engagement thereby increasing morale, partnerships and productivity
  • Use conflict within the team as a stepping-stone to accelerate creativity and innovation to promote high performance
  • Understand the nature of systems – interacting units with interdependent relationships that have impact on every member of the team
  • Identify strengths of their individual members and teach them to align to the needs of the team
  • Individuals within the team gain awareness into their patterns – the first step to change
  • Build a positive orientation therefore higher productivity
  • Share ownership and responsibility
  • Create alignment to vision/mission and values
  • Design behavioral norms, define roles, and shared performance goals
  • Align mindsets and behaviors with strategic business initiatives
NO MATTER HOW MUCH MONEY, RESEARCH, TECHNOLOGY AND OTHER RESOURCES YOU THROW AT A PROJECT, IT IS DOOMED TO FAILURE IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A WORKFORCE OF FOCUSED, ALIGNED, AND COMMITTED INDIVIDUALS.

If your experiencing any of the following call us at 847-537-7691 or fill out the form on the Contact Us page.

  • Trust and relationship issues
  • Conflict that is either ignored or escalated
  • Dealing with blame or defensiveness
  • Retention issues
  • Missed deadlines
  • Failed initiatives
  • Failure to innovate; always behind the eight ball in fixing old systems
  • Burnout and breakdowns
  • Lack of leadership
  • Ineffective communication
  • Turf protection
  • Productivity loss
  • Inability to deal with change

Structure:

Every coaching opportunity is unique.  The event could range from a couple of hours of customized coaching for a specific goal, to a short or long term program to address specific needs.


In addition to customized team programs and the variety of workshops offered, we also work with the most cutting edge Team Assessment on the market today.

Learn More…

If you’re interested in spending a day in a nature setting on a Teams Challenge Course

Learn More…