When running and observing coaching sessions I am asked ‘what would make me a better coach?’. In the majority of the situations I give the feedback… listen more, use silence more and stop asking leading questions which lead to the coach giving advice.
This usually happens as the coach is a leader or manager and they have an agenda, genuinely want to help or dare I say it… let their ego get in the way
Direct or Push style coaching can be useful if the coachee is inexperienced, however too much use of this style can result in:
- Coach becoming a ‘knowledge crutch’ for the coachee; with the coach / manager being continually asked for advice when the coachee encounters challenges
- If the advice doesn’t work out the coachee can blame the advice rather than the way it was put into practice
- As coaches we cannot know all the answers so it puts pressure on us to be the expert
So to increase the effectiveness of your coaching try a few things
- 70 / 30 or 80 /20 percentage of the coachee talking
- Hold back on suggestions unless the coachee asks you directly for them
- The coachee tends to have lots of ideas on how to improve, take time to explore these so they have a plan b or c if the plan a doesn’t work out
- The coachee may have a reflective personality so let them think in silence, dont assume that you need to ask another question or offer an answer
- Let them take responsibility, replace ‘we’ with ‘you’ e.g. what can you do to….?
- If asked for feedback, reverse the question and ask them what they thought of their performance
- At suitable stages in the session get the coachee to summarise the points coverred rather than you do it.
To identify what your style of coaching is, have a look at the coaching spectrum below and note down the techniques you currently use. Try using some of techniques you dont use when applicable.
If you have any questions or want to share your thoughts on coaching, feel free to use the comment box below.