Team effectiveness and well-being can be negatively affected by unconscious behavioral patterns and dysfunctional group dynamics. Becoming consciously aware of such patterns and understanding their root cause is an important step toward rebuilding a healthy and well-functioning team. When such issues are addressed in a team coaching setting, drama techniques are a powerful tool to help teams understand and improve their functioning. Based on a multiple case study and from a psychodynamic perspective, this article gives an overview of current literature on this topic, formulates criteria found to be conducive to the effective use of such techniques, and describes team coaching qualities helpful in successfully applying these techniques and dealing with group dynamics.
...feelings and defensive patterns that are (unconsciously) present within clients, teams or organizations, can be manifested in and felt by other individuals or groups…(Hirschorn, 1988; Ketsde Vries, 2011).
According to Winnicott (1971), working with drama techniques can bring about a certain joyfulness and fun, a feeling of playing and cheerful pretending, similar to the way children learn to deal with the world through their play; playing as a safe and light-hearted method to help individuals and groups take a deeper look at anxiety provoking situations without becoming overwhelmed by the emotions connected to these (Moreno, 1953).
Team leaders and members indicated that the playfulness of the techniques made it safer and easier to look at their own behaviour...Team coaches found these techniques helpful in creating a safe holding space, encouraging teams with cold feet to overcome their hesitation to discuss the more daunting issues between them and to experiment with new behaviour.
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