Coaching is a way to unlock potential and enhance performance, to help us get from where we are to where we want to be.
It is a privilege for me to coach individuals and teams to help them on their way. And it is equally an honour to help them learn the craft of coaching.
Time and time again, I am inspired by the leaders who are introduced to coaching and find it so liberating and empowering. We have just finished yet another leadership development programme of which coaching was a key part, and the insights and skills gained are already having a noticeable impact in people’s professional and personal lives.
As is often the case, these leaders have been promoted because of their expertise and experience. Their identity and role has been largely defined from being an expert, having the answers, holding the knowledge. Adopting coaching as a mindset and an activity, requiring them to step back from being in ‘tell’ mode to taking a more enquiry based approach to help the other person find their own solutions within, was both challenging and enabling. Quickly they understood how their beliefs and attitudes contributed to the relationship with, and performance of the other. Rather than jumping in with advice or opinions, they would question to raise awareness and responsibility. By doing so they tapped into their capability to really listen. And they understood how effective goal setting guides the person to find their own focus and motivation.
To help people to perform to their potential, you don't need to be a full time professional coach. If we believe in the other person, establish a good relationship with them, question and listen with care, provide courageous feedback, as colleagues we can learn to support each other on our respective journeys of transformation and growth.
Click on previous postings for various aspects of coaching:
Two key coaching books to stimulate your interest are:
Whitmore, J. (2002) Coaching for Performance, Nicholas Brealey Publishing Ltd. London
Whitworth, L., Kimsey-House, K., Kimsey-House, H., and Sandahl, P. (2007) Co-Active Coaching, London: Davies-Black Publishing.
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