Are You Reaping the Benefits from Closure?

A client of mine had an amazing breakthrough in one of our team coaching sessions some time ago. I was shocked and disheartened when we returned for the next session, and they did not seem to act on or recall the inspiration. Since then, I have consciously incorporated reflection and closure into my work as an executive and team coach and organization development consultant.

We often invest time and energy in opening or starting meetings and initiatives. However, we may not pay attention to closing and reap the benefits. We are often too focused on moving on to the next meeting, project, or initiative or hesitate to address emotions often associated with endings.

Effective closure is not just about tying up loose ends; it’s about mobilizing energy for the next steps and new initiatives. When something is unfinished, such as writing a paper, paying taxes, or completing communications, our energy is tied up with what we need to do. But when we finally complete the task, we often experience a profound sense of relief and a release of tension. When we take the time to assess what we are learning, we can redirect our energy to the next project and feel a sense of calm and satisfaction.

I have found the following questions to be useful for closure:
– What are you leaving with from this experience? What meaning are you making?
– What has worked well?
– What is unfinished?
– Is there anything else that needs to be said for closure?

I make it a point to allow space for closure in coaching sessions and team interventions. I don’t wait until the final closure of the engagement, but I pay attention to closure at the end of every single interaction. This practice has proven invaluable. Asking, “What are you leaving from this experience?” often brings about a significant shift in perspective, emphasizing the importance of closure in every interaction. When we do this, we ensure more learning and appreciation.

What is your experience with closure?

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