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30
Mar
2009
Three truths about coaching

Here are 3 truths about coaching which at first appear counter-intuitive. 

Michael Bungay Stanier, has identified some of the pitfalls of introducing coaching into an organisation and some practical ways to overcome them:

1.  Don't introduce a coaching culture - this gives the impression that it's the latest trend from HR rather than giving it the business and personal contexts which encourage managers to want to try it out and see what's in it for them.

2.  Keep it short, keep it simple - Michael suggests that coaching in 10 minutes or less makes coaching achievable.  Using coaching like this makes it easy to fit into the working day and so encourages managers to use this style more.  Benefits include more motivated employees resulting in a reduced workload for the manager.  A win/win for everyone.

3.  Strive for adequate - that means appropriate for the moment and efficient.  Building a mystique around coaching just discourages managers from even trying, so encouragement to use the skills they've got, supported by some training, creates the momentum for most to try it out for themselves.

As always, Michael offers practical, no-nonsense advice.  What I like about Michael's suggestions is that he offers a practical way of introducing coaching to an organisation without a fanfare and having getting it perfect.  Having said this, for people in more isolated leadership roles - CEOs, HR Directors, headteachers for example - having an external coach can be of immense benefit.  They can listen, be a sounding board, someone willing to challenge assumptions, provide support, feedback and encouragement that would not otherwise be there.

 

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