Solution-focused is a powerful and strengths-based approach to creating conversations of possibility and hope and to facilitate positive change.

The focus of attention is on solution building (instead of problem fixing) and collaborating with people – whatever the context – to describe and construct their preferred future and the difference this will make to them.

By focusing on what’s working and progress already made, amplifying strengths and resourcefulness,-  and believing in the competence and potential of the person this facilitates the conditions for them to work out their own answers and ways to meet their desired outcomes.

The power of this approach has long been evidenced in helping services, community work and schools, in staff / human resource management, coaching and supervision, and organisational development.

The ideas, values and skills of the solution-focused mindset and communication are helpful to anyone who works with people to facilitate change.

Zebra’s Background in Solution-focused Work
The Zebra Collective is a solution-focused organisation: this approach runs through everything we do and is, for example, reflected in how we design and deliver all our training, reflective learning, facilitation, consultancy and community work.

Since our beginnings in 2003, we have delivered solution-focused training for organisations in both the third (community & voluntary) sector and the statutory sector, and have, for example, more recently begun working alongside a local authority Adult Social Care department on a change management programme towards a solution-focused culture and practice.

For further information about Zebra’s work and social justice approach to solution-focused practice see the article by Marc Gardiner of the Zebra Collective and leading solution-focused practitioner, Guy Shennan  about using solution-focused practice in pursuit of social change: published in the international journal of Critical and Radical Social Work and available to download

Zebra Solution-focused Offer

See examples of our current offer below and contact us at for further details. We work across the South West and nationally and will happily travel anywhere to meet clients’ needs.

Solution-focused Approach Open Course
We regularly offer 2-day Solution-focused training courses – see our upcoming events section.

Solution-focused Practitioner Groups
We run regular CPD events for solution-focused practitioners and there are now 4 groups (Cornwall, Devon, Plymouth and Torbay) which bring together people committed to working in a solution-focused way, to promote professional development and build networks. You can find out more about these groups in our upcoming events section.

Tailored Training and Reflective Learning
Bringing a solution-focused approach to your workplace and whereever positive change and development is required.

Management and Supervision Service
Tailored to organisations’ / employees’ requirements, including:

  • our long-established external supervision service, which ranges from one-off sessions through to ongoing supervisory relationships
  • supervision and line management training using a solution-focused approach
  • Solution-focused management development training

Coaching Services
For individuals and organisations

Consultancy Services
Working, for example, together and alongside organisations to develop solution-focused and strengths-based culture change

Facilitation Services

  • team awaydays
  • team development sessions
  • strategic planning
  • action planning
  • conflict resolution (between individuals, within teams, with families, between families and services)

Community Engagement and Participation
Consultation, facilitation and training on using a SFC approach in community contexts

Sessional Project Work

  • schools (e.g. students struggling in the classroom)
  • mental health
  • learning disabilities
  • homeless services
  • housing support
  • neighbour disputes
  • alcohol & drug services
  • children & youth work
  • social care referrals

Solution-focused Therapy
Where the solution-focused approach originated.

  • We offer both 1:1 work and family / group / relationship work
  • We can take on contracts with organisations to provide one-off / short-term counselling input for staff

Solution-focused Conferences
Since 2011 we have hosted 3 Solution-focused conferences which have successfully brought solution-focused practitioners from a wide and diverse range of backgrounds in the South West to be inspired and further develop their practice.