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A Team Consultant’s Client

One can only be a team consultant when one works for the team, and not for the team leader! One can observe, time and again, that team leaders wish to revamp their team by pursuing certain of their (own) goals with the help of a consultant, team developer or trainer. Even goals which initially appear non-contentious, such as better cooperation or similar, are always primarily the concerns of the leader, not of the team. Not least, because a poor cooperation might, for example, be the consequence of poor leadership, and thus, a valid team symptom, which could be understood as a problem of formal leadership. Those who, as consultants, make themselves into an extended arm of the team leader, are acting unprofessionally, because they are then not advising in this role, but manipulating.

Therefore, the consultant always requires the opportunity to speak to the team members, so as to allow the perspectives of all team members to flow into the consultation. Everybody in the team is the client. The team is being counselled and must not be primed with the goals of the team leader.

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