Professional diploma in coaching
A model for coaching
Sir John Whitmore advocated that coaching was all about developing or raising two things in the coachee, their level of awareness and their level of responsibility.‘If I give you my advice and it fails, you will blame me. I have traded my advice for your responsibility and that is seldom a good deal.’ – Sir John Whitmore. Simple, but not simplistic, the GROW model will be presented in this book as a framework for your coaching practice. It is important, at this stage, to emphasise that the GROW model is one coaching process out of many that are now available for coaches.
Listening to encourage thinking
This is so important, we put it at the top of the list. You can’t be a good coach unless you really, really listen. Note, it doesn’t just mean listening to what is being said. It also means listening to what is not being said. This is where you can really help your coachee – by asking insightful questions about what you notice might be going on for them.
Asking powerful questions
Asking questions is at the heart of great coaching. They are the tools of your trade. This lesson highlights the importance of using questions intentionally. The appropriate use of both open and closed questions will be considered. There is a discussion of particular types of questions appropriate to specific coaching situations.
Building rapport and trust
This is chronologically the first skill you need to use as a coach as it is the gateway to trust. The coaching process will not work unless you create a good rapport from the beginning, and it should be maintained throughout the coaching relationship. Rapport is what allows coachee's to feel relaxed with their coach and open up – so that personal barriers and fears can be identified. It also allows the coach to ask harder and more challenging questions.
Empathy can be defined as our ability to put ourselves in others’ shoes and appreciate how they are likely to be feeling or thinking in a given situation. What might it feel like to be them? Daniel Goleman, who coined the concept of ‘Emotional Intelligence’ stated that ’empathy is the most important people skill’. He says that empathy is an important communication skill, but it can be easily forgotten because we focus on what should be done in a situation, rather than on how the other person feels.
Summarising and paraphrasing
The advanced listening skills of summarising and paraphrasing/reflecting help you guide your coachee to allow them to make sense of what they are grappling with.
Giving and receiving feedback
One of the most useful things for your coachee can be you pointing out to them things you are noticing about them, for instance, their behaviour, their reactions to questions, and their facial expressions. As coaching is about increasing self-awareness in the person being coached, the coach needs to know how to give helpful feedback. Providing high-quality, objective information to the person being coached can help to increase understanding of her situation. In addition, the coach needs to be able to positively accept feedback to improve her own practice.
The coaching context
Where does coaching fit in? What is coaching, and what is it not?