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Coaching Methodolgy Questions I don’t have the answer yet….

What value will coaching bring a client?

A coach supports an individual toward an important change that leads to a more fulfilling future and addresses the changes needed.

What will I as a coach tell my client about my background, approach and style?

I don’t know?? TBD

What will occur in each coaching session?

How will we create goals?

How will I assess the clients readiness to change, learning style and commitment to the work?

Consider the Features of Prochaska and DiClemente’s stages of change model for Readiness to change.

How will I personally respond to client resistance?

How do I build off of the clients strengths?

How are the coaching outcomes measured?




Coaching Tools and Frameworks

Reflection leads to Personal Learning

Cluttebuck’s Seven Conversations identifies three phases of reflection (Clutterbuck 2011). The role of reflection can help me as a coach stay away from acting in an advisory or fix and tell approach.  I must remember to think about reflection from three different points in the coaching process.

  1. Reflection before coaching for both coach / coachee.
  2. Reflection during the coaching dialogue, including the coach’s internal conversation, spoken conversation and the coachees internal conversation.
  3. Reflection after the coaching conversation for both coach / coachee

Questions that are beneficial for the coach to reflect on before a coaching conversation include:  What themes stand out? What are the client’s dominant stories / narrative? What do I notice about myself and my feelings when I work with my client?

Questions that are beneficial for the client to reflect on before a coaching conversation include: What stands out as most important from the last session? What themes are coming up? What feelings are emerging? What could you share with your coach that may be valuable for tracking?

Questions to think about during the conversation:  How might someone else view this?  If you could get on the balcony of your life what would you see? Is there another vantage point you haven’t considered?

Reflections after the coaching conversation for the coach could include:  What did I do that was effective? What did I learn about myself as a coach?  What made me uncomfortable?

Coaching Tools and Frameworks

Coaching Contract Details

My first discussion with my client should include the details of the coaching contract

  1. What is coaching and what it isn’t – explain how coaching works and how it is different from counseling, consulting,  Explore the clients understanding of coaching and past experiences
  2. Confidentiality – Communicate levers of confidentiality. Identify concerns client may have in this area.
  3. Frequency – Discuss the frequency of coaching
  4. Length of engagement – Link the complexities of the work and the coaching goals.
  5. Length of each session –
  6. Cancelation of session – clarity about canceling in specific amount of tine
  7. Modality
  8. Location
  9. Pricing
  10. Assessment – stakeholder interviews or other assessment data to review
  11. Measures of success and outcomes – provide client with a sense of how we will measure success and monitor measrueable outcomes
  12. Feedback – how does the client like to receive feedback? understand the client’s style.
  13. Explanation of the coach’s approach – coaches discuss how they operate, get information, how they like to receive feedback, get challenged by coach, and held accounable.
Coaching Tools and Frameworks

Questions for the coach

  1. Have we examined the effectiveness of our coaching engagement, mapping our work to the stated goals, tracking the progress and feedback
  2. Have we created a long-range plan that will ensure a continued pathway of support and development?
  3. Have I arranged a follow up that works for the client.
  4. Have we engaged in measuring the impact of the coaching outcomes on the client
  5. Have I engaged in my own reflections both following coaching sessions and prior to next one making sure I notice my own reactions and feelings as a coach?
  6. Do I continue to ask for peer coach support when I am unsure about one of my coaching sessions?
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Balancing consulting experience while coaching

What if I think there is value in wearing two hats during my coaching engagement? I must consider four components prior to moving down this path.

Is the information I have relevant to the coachee and their situation?  What specifically will this coachee gain from my contribution?

Clearly state I am not wearing my coach hat while I am providing specific expertise or experience.

Ensure the coachee want the information.  Clearly ask permission.

Ensure I am clear that I am offering this with no strings atttached.

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Goal-setting seems like an important part of helping a client create goals from their plans and intentions.  Similar to consulting, I imagine the best goals are specific and measurable and action oriented.  At times, it may make sense to split larger outcomes into smaller parts to help the client see progress and feel good about movement and action.  I am imagining the best time to discuss goal setting would be upfront in the contracting phase to ensure success can be defined in the relationship upfront.

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When I start thinking about the agenda for a coaching call I wonder what happens when we get derailed with a long winded background story?  I appreciate that the coachee should do most of the talking but how can I help the my client get to the bottom line and help them discover the heart of the problem?

The recommendation is to describe the use of bottom-lining early on in the coaching contract so they are not surprised the first to I ask them to get to the bottom-line.  I can remind them the story is background and in the coaching relationship, the background is secondary and there isn’t time for long stories.

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Asking Permission

I would like to respect my coachees boundaries by asking questions such as “May we work on this issue?, “Can I tell you what I see?, “Would you like some feedback on that?”  It is important to remind the coaches that they have the power in the relationship and the coach knows the limits of  their power.    This dynamic is slightly different in a consulting engagement because here the coachee takes responsibility  for managing the relationship versus the consultant in a consulting engagement.


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On my coaching training journey, I wonder if the “ask don’t tell” philosophy  limits a coachees ability to take action.  What if I use every technique I learn in the next 6 months but it is an uphill battle with little movement.

In consulting, I often need to look at a problem from a different vantage point when I don’t see a clear path forward.  I believe there are times when there is a need for a a brief stepping back to monitor what is happening in order to keep the coaching moving forward and remain in a co-active connection.   I also wonder if there is room to share my own experiences and opinion with the understanding that it is not “the right answer” but just another data point to consider.

But if I find myself in self-analysis and am having an emotional reaction I must find my way back to then coach and reconnect.  If this occurs I will wonder if I have had enough training to be engaging in coaching conversations.  I must remind myself that a co-created conversation is about two people in a dialogue with a common purpose.



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Myself as a coach

What if my strengths are so overpowering that my client is reluctant to share their anxieties and concerns?

What if my rough edges make it difficult to slow down and build the relationship and alliance I need with my client?

What if my aspirations and competition are so powerful that I fail to recognize that our client wants something simpler, more direct and more achievable and short term?

My coaching pact to myself and my clients includes ensuring I balance my strengths and weaknesses to promote an unbiased presence. I will need to bring my most authentic self.  I will ensure I face my limitations, blind spots, rough edges in order to strengthen my abilities and continue to learn and grow as a coach.