If you have a coach or are a coach, it's likely that you are interested in initiating change somehow, someway. You see an opportunity in yourself or in someone else, and you want to make a difference. Now, if you're the one that's hoping to change, well then, for the most part, you're in control. Alternatively, if you're simply involved in someone else's process, your role is dependent on 5 things.
1. Their purpose for changing, and the priority they put on the process.
2. Their interest in using you as a resource, and their level of respect for you.
3. Their willingness to do the hard work that's inevitable & essential.
4. Your ability to influence.
5. Your patience for the process and the other person.
It's critical to consider these 5 factors because if you're helping someone else, you must recognize that it's not all about the other person (putting too much pressure on him/her) and it's not all about you (taking too much pride in yourself). At the same time, you must willingly accept the fact that some people do not want your help. It's not your job to convince them to change.
If someone invites you into his/her process toward change, you inherently inherit responsibility. Be accountable to it, without abusing it. In order to do this well, try utilizing the ABCDE framework to lay the right coach-client foundation.
ASK QUESTIONS. If someone approaches you and asks you to be her coach - don't just accept the offer. Ask questions to better understand her purpose, goal and vision for contacting you. All too often, we take things at face value, and down the road, we realize we weren't the right solution.
BELIEVE. I think it's absolutely fundamental to only accept coaching clients that we believe have potential. Now, I'm not suggesting that only high performers deserve your time! No, instead I'm saying that if you don't believe in the client, you are doing him a huge disservice by accepting his offer. We all know that little feels worse than being surrounded by someone who doesn't see and believe in our potential! Don't bog down the client with your disbelief.
CONTRACT. Once you decide you want to help the client work toward change, document this mutual decision. A contract doesn't need to be exhaustive to be valuable; it simply needs to put the relationship in writing, so that you both remain accountable to the process. Decide between the two of you what this should look like.
DIALOGUE. A dialogue is not a one-way conversation, it's a two-part process where new content is created. Set aside time where the two of you can connect and collaborate over conversation. Bonding before the official coaching process begins is fundamental to building a relationship. Good relationships harvest good rewards.
EXPECTATIONS. As their coach, it's your job to extract their expectations because most people aren't experts at explicitly stating what they hope to do, receive and become. If you don't understand their expectations from the start, you will have a hard time delivering valuable coaching strategies.
ABCDE is a good way to begin the coaching process.
Looking for more insights about coaching? Check out more from Doug at his blog at http://wcwpartners.com/our-blog/.
Doug C. Watsabaugh, senior partner at WCW Partners, understands how to meet your unique performance challenges. With more than 20 years of experience, WCW Partners is a performance-improvement company that helps businesses revitalize their results and achieve record-breaking performance.
If you are looking to excel in sales, service or leadership, let Doug develop the capability in you! http://wcwpartners.com.
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