During this week, I will be highlighting the value of coaching, coaching resources, the International Coach Federation, and practical insights for coaches and clients.
Many people that I talk to about coaching have had some confusion about the differences between coaching, mentoring, counseling and other helping roles. They are often surprised when I explain that I am very appreciative of each of these roles. Just like I wouldn’t try to use a hammer for every home improvement project, I wouldn’t recommend working with a coach for all your developmental and life issues.
It’s important to know the distinctive contributions and approaches that each helping role offers. My friend Steve Ogne emphasizes how mentors “pour into a leader” from their own knowledge and experiences, while coaches “pull out of a leader” from the leader’s knowledge and experiences.
Coaching Basics (from the ICF website)
What is 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.
What is a coach’s responsibility in the client-coach partnership?
A coach should:
- Discover, clarify, and align with what the client wants to achieve
- Encourage client self-discovery
- Elicit client-generated solutions and strategies
- Hold the client responsible and accountable
Professional coaches provide an ongoing partnership designed to help clients produce fulfilling results in their personal and professional lives. Ultimately, coaches help people improve their performances and enhance the quality of their lives.
Coaches are trained to listen, to observe and to customize their approach 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.
What are the benefits of coaching?
Individuals who engage in a coaching partnership can expect to experience fresh perspectives on personal challenges and opportunities, enhanced thinking and decision making skills, enhanced interpersonal effectiveness, and increased confidence in carrying out their chosen work and life roles.
Consistent with a commitment to enhancing their personal effectiveness, they can also expect to see appreciable results in the areas of productivity, personal satisfaction with life and work, and the achievement of personally relevant goals.
In the past year, I’ve been blessed to train coaches in Bellevue, Istanbul, Denver, Little Rock, Brazil, and Malaga. In the next two months I will be training coaches in Colorado Springs and New York City. For more information on these training events, go to Creative Results: Core Training.