What makes coaching effective?

“This is where I am now. This is where I want to be. Let’s figure out how to get there.”

This is the framework around my coaching sessions. The client states where they are stuck or where they feel the urge to progress. We discuss what they would like to have instead (the goals for the coaching session and beyond). We then start building the bridge, by exploring what is needed to get there and what is blocking the way. 

Easy. Everyone could be a coach to facilitate such a conversation. Except, it’s not just a conversation. And knowing the framework is not enough to make coaching effective. 

Coaching is effective when the client…

  • has space to reflect
  • sees their own blind spots 
  • gets new awareness about themselves 

in order to move forward in the direction they want. 

There are some essential foundations that need to be in place in order for the coaching to be successful. I have listed some below that I believe are non-negotiable.

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The relationship is built on trust 

The dynamic between coach and client is key for a successful coaching journey. The relationship has to be built on mutual trust.

It has to be strong enough to overcome challenges and in times of crisis. Both parties need to feel comfortable to speak openly and the truth, even if it hurts. 

Coach and clients are equal partners

It baffles clients when I tell them that I don’t know anything else than they do, that I don’t have the answers they are looking for.

Coaching is one of the few professions where there is no superiority, neither from the coach nor the client. They are equal partners in the relationship and together, figure out the journey of where the client wants to go. 

The coach has to believe in what the client only dares to dream of 

Clients sometimes drop hints into a coaching conversation that may sound like this: “It would be my absolute dream to run my own business”. It seems so far away for them, that they don’t, not even in the slightest, consider their dream as a real possibility. 

The coach has to be believe in the client’s capabilities and their dreams and bring it closer to the client, until they start believing in it themselves. 

Forward movement 

The consequences of all of the above should be forward movement. In coaching, there should be progress in the form of action that the client takes. Those action will result in

  • changes to their behaviour where it didn’t serve them 
  • new habits that support them in day to day life 
  • actions where they step out of their comfort zone and try new things
  • letting go of old habits (and people) that didn’t serve them

If this content resonates and you would like support with a similar topic, let’s connect and have a chat. 

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