This past Spring I was asked to be on The Coaching Conversation Podcast with host Salah Elleithy of SparkAgility. As Salah stated himself:

“I had a wonderful conversation with Marsha Acker. Many insights emerged on facilitation, coaching, balancing the being and the doing, self-awareness, listening, dialogic leadership and coaching as a core leadership skill.”

Biggest takeaway: it all starts with self-awareness!

Give it a listen!

The Coaching Conversation Podcast

Here are a few takeaways from the conversation.

How Can You Tell When a Conversation or the Team is Stuck? 

You might not realize when a conversation is stuck. However, there are several indicators that might hint at this. 

Indicators for a ‘stuck conversation’ include the following. 

Stuckness can be heard  

  • Hearing the same conversation over and over

Stuckness can be felt and seen

  • Drained energy
  • Body language
  • Disengaged team members

I look at the behavior of the team and how the conversation is unfolding. My job as facilitator is to help the team see it themselves; they need to realize they are stuck. 

I love using the metaphor of a mirror. 

I can hold up a mirror to the team for them to see it but the goal is that I want the team to hold the mirror themselves. So that they can notice they are stuck.

In other words, team members need to grow the muscle of seeing their patterns

Groundhog Day Conversations: What Are They?

A Groundhog Day conversation is when you find yourself having the same conversation over and over again. You think you have resolved it one day, only to find yourself having the same conversation a week later. . These conversations lead nowhere, go nowhere and accomplish nothing. Yet they happen over and over again.

As soon as you notice this phenomenon, ask yourself: “What part am I playing in these conversations that make them Groundhog Day conversations?”

Whether you are part of a team, or a manager – what skills will you need to go beyond these Groundhog Day conversations with your team members?

This is a life changing conversation to have with a mentor or coach! 

You will need to realize what part you’ve been playing in these conversations as to why they keep happening, and then be willing to work on yourself to improve and change the conversation!


Listen to The Coaching Conversation Podcast for the Full Interview

If you have a few minutes, we encourage you to listen to The Coaching Conversation podcast, not just this episode, but others as well. Put link to the podcast here, also.

There is always room to grow, improve and learn no matter what level of leadership experience you have. 

Having skillful and meaningful conversations is something that can, and needs to be practiced by those in leadership positions. 

Have you ever had Groundhog Day conversations? 


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