Business coaching is a ‘whole person’ development activity and can have positive outcomes for organizational change..
Business coaching is a powerful development tool, and can be beneficial for those providing the coaching (the Coach) as well as those receiving (the Client).
There are many models of coaching, some may have a therapeutic angle, some with an intention of teaching “something” and some which are more counseling based. However, whichever model is used, there some key principles which will lead to an effective result.
The Client has the resources within themselves to resolve their particular issue. Only they know what to do because they possess of all the essential information, they alone will have to implement any action and ultimately live with the results. The Coach can, and often will, offer useful additional information, but it is up to the Client whether they use it.
The role of the Coach is not advice giving. The giving of advice implies a sense of knowing better than the Client, even if it may not be in their best interests. The Coach should facilitate and encourage the independence of the Client through empowering them to generate and consider the options available.
Coaching is not just about professional issues, or just about personal life. Experience shows that difficulties in either part of a person life are often present in the other; therefore, the issues need to be explored in totality rather than in isolation.
There is no set agenda with coaching. This is essentially different from traditional teaching practice where particular learning objectives need to be met. The Coach may have models and programs for particular issues, but if these are not an issue for the Client, they are not appropriate.
There is no power base. The Coach and Client work together as equals. The relationship is not dependent on the Coach requiring authority and knowledge that the Client does not have. In order to be effective the relationship is based on mutual respect.
Clients seek coaching because they want something to change and they want to become more effective, whether this is managing a small team or succeeding within a particular sport. The role of the Coach is to help the Client achieve their goal and therefore the client must want to change.
Coaching should not be mistaken for the other methods of client-centered business relationships namely Counseling and Consulting (I am going to talk about those in another BizBlog)