OUR COACHING SERVICES
- Coaching FAQ (Based on ICF pronouncements)
What is professional coaching?
The ICF defines coaching as partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and
creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional
potential. Coaching honors the client as the expert in his/her life and work, and
believes that every client is creative, resourceful, and whole. Standing on this
foundation, the coach's responsibility is to:
individual client needs. They seek to elicit solutions and strategies from the client;
they believe the client is naturally creative and resourceful.
The coach's job is to provide support to enhance the skills, resources, and
creativity that the client already has.
How can you determine if coaching is right for you?
To determine if you could benefit from coaching, start by summarizing what you
would expect to accomplish in coaching. When someone has a fairly clear idea of
the desired outcome, a coaching partnership can be a useful tool for developing a
strategy for how to achieve that outcome with greater ease
Since coaching is a partnership, also ask yourself if you find it valuable to collaborate,
to have another viewpoint and to be asked to consider new perspectives. Also, ask
yourself if you are ready to devote the time and the energy to making real changes
in your work or life
If the answer to these questions is yes, then coaching may be a beneficial way for
you to grow and develop
What are some typical reasons someone might work with a coach?
There are many reasons that an individual or team might choose to work with a
coach, including but not limited to the following:
What does the Coaching process look like?
Coaching typically begins with a personal interview (either face-to-face or by
conference call) to assess the individual's current opportunities and challenges,
define the scope of the relationship, identify priorities for action, and establish
specific desired outcomes. Subsequent coaching sessions may be conducted in
person or over the telephone, with each session lasting a previously established
length of time
Between scheduled coaching sessions, the individual may be asked to complete
specific actions that support the achievement of one's personally prioritized goals.
The coach may provide additional resources in the form of relevant articles,
checklists, assessments, or models, to support the individual's thinking and actions
Is there more than one method in Coaching?
Concepts, models and principles:
A variety of concepts, models and principles drawn from the behavioral sciences,
management literature, spiritual traditions and/or the arts and humanities, may
be incorporated into the coaching conversation in order to increase the individual's
self-awareness and awareness of others, foster shifts in perspective, promote fresh
insights, provide new frameworks for looking at opportunities and challenges, and
energize and inspire the individual's forward actions
Coaching incorporates an appreciative approach. The appreciative approach
is grounded in what's right, what's working, what's wanted, and what's needed
'to get you there'. Using an appreciative approach, the coach models constructive
communication skills and methods the individual or team can utilize to enhance
personal communication effectiveness
A variety of assessments are available to support the coaching process, depending
upon the needs and circumstances of the individual. Assessments provide objective
information which can enhance the individual's self-awareness as well as awareness
of others and their circumstances, provide a benchmark for creating coaching goals
and actionable strategies, and offer a method for evaluating progress
How long does a coach work with an individual?
The length of a coaching partnership varies depending on the individual's or
team's needs and preferences. Some coaching programs have a defined
path with a number of sessions specified within the program. One-off top up
sessions, are often made available if they meet the individual's or team's
requirements. For certain types of focused coaching, 3 to 6 months of
working with a coach may achieve the desired result. For other types
of coaching, people may find it beneficial to work with a coach for a longer period
Factors that may impact the length of a coaching partnership include:
The types of goals, the ways individuals or teams like to work, the frequency
of coaching meetings and the financial resources available to support coaching
Ultimately the duration of the coaching relationship will vary between
coaching clients depending on the individual's (or the team's) personal
needs and preferences
How do you ensure a compatible partnership?
Overall, be prepared to design the coaching partnership with the coach.
For example, think of a strong partnership that you currently have in your
work or life. Look at how you built that relationship and what is important
to you about partnership. You will want to build those same things into
a coaching relationship. Here are a few other tips:
* Have a personal interview with one or more coaches to determine "what
feels right" in terms of the chemistry. Coaches are accustomed to being
interviewed, and usually, there is no charge for an introductory conversation
* Look for stylistic similarities and differences between the coach and you
and how these might support your growth as an individual or the growth
of your team
* Discuss your goals for coaching within the context of the coach's specialty
or the coach's preferred way of working with an individual or a team
* Talk with the coach about what to do if you ever feel things are not going well;
make some agreements up front on how to handle questions or problems
* Remember that coaching is a partnership, so be assertive about talking with the
coach about anything that is of concern to you about your coaching at any time
Within the partnership, what does the coach do?
The role of the coach is to:
* Provide objective assessment and observations that foster the individual's
or team members' enhanced self-awareness and awareness of others
* Practice astute listening in order to garner a full understanding of the
individual's or team's circumstances
* Be a sounding board in support of possibility thinking and thoughtful planning
and decision making
* Champion opportunities and potential
* Encourage, stretch, and challenge, commensurate with personal strengths
* Foster the shifts in thinking that reveal fresh perspectives
* Challenge blind spots in order to illuminate new possibilities
* Support the creation of alternative scenarios
Finally, the coach maintains professional boundaries in the coaching
relationship, including confidentiality, and adherence to a code of
professional and ethical conduct.
Within the partnership, the individual do?
The role of the individual or team is to:
* Create the coaching agenda based on personally meaningful coaching goals
* Utilize assessment and observations to enhance self-awareness and
awareness of others
* Envision personal and/or organizational success
* Assume full responsibility for personal decisions and actions
* Utilize the coaching process to promote possibility thinking and
* Take courageous action in alignment with personal goals and aspirations
* Engage big picture thinking and problem solving skills
* Utilize the tools, concepts, models and principles provided by the coach
to engage effective forward actions
What does coaching ask of an individual?
To be successful, coaching asks certain things of the individual, all of which begin
with intention. Additionally, clients should:
* Focus - on one's self, the tough questions, the hard truths, and one's success
* Observe - the behaviors and communications of others
* Listen - to one's intuition, assumptions, judgments, and to the way one sounds
when one speaks
* Self discipline - to challenge existing attitudes, beliefs and behaviors and
to develop new ones which serve one's goals in a superior way
* Style - leveraging personal strengths and overcoming limitations in order to
develop a winning style
* Decisive actions - however uncomfortable, and in spite of personal
insecurities, in order to reach for the extraordinary
* Compassion - for one's self as he or she experiments with new behaviors,
experiences setbacks-and for others as they do the same
* Humor - committing to not take one's self so seriously, using humor to lighten
and brighten any situation
* Personal control - maintaining composure in the face of disappointment and
unmet expectations, avoid emotional reactivity
* Courage - to reach for more than before, to shift out of being fear based, into
being in abundance as a core strategy for success, to engage in continual self
examination, to overcome internal and external obstacles
How can the success of the coaching process be measured?
Measurement may be thought of in two distinct ways.
First, there are the external indicators of performance: measures which can
be seen and measured in the individual's or team's environment. Examples
of external measures include achievement of coaching goals established at the
outset of the coaching relationship, increased income/revenue, obtaining a
promotion, performance feedback which is obtained from a sample of the
individual's constituents (e.g. direct reports, colleagues, customers, boss,
the manager him/herself), personal and/or business performance data
(e.g. productivity, efficiency measures). The external measures selected
should ideally be things the individual is already measuring and are things
the individual has some ability to directly influence.
Second, there are internal indicators of success: measures which are inherent
within the individual or team members being coached and can be measured by
the individual or team being coached with the support of the coach. Ideally,
both external and internal metrics are incorporated. Examples of internal
measures include self-scoring/self-validating assessments that can be
administered initially and at regular intervals in the coaching process, changes
in the individual's self-awareness and awareness of others, shifts in thinking
which inform more effective actions, and shifts in one's emotional state which
What are the factors that should be considered when
looking at the financial investment in coaching?
Working with a coach requires both a personal commitment of time and energy
as well as a financial commitment.
Fees charged vary by specialty and by the level of experience of the coach. It must
be noted however, that in certain circumstances, some coaches may have pro bono
arrangements in place to cater for the Life Coaching needs of people experiencing
financial stress, or other such road blocks on the path to engaging the services of
a Life Coach.
Individuals should consider both the desired benefits as well as the anticipated
length of time to be spent in coaching.
Since the coaching relationship is predicated on clear communication, any
financial concerns or questions should be voiced in initial conversations,
and attended to, before the coaching agreement is signed by the parties.