The Coach’s Objective

The Coach’s Objective. I’ve spent much the past two weeks in one-on-one coaching sessions. I am always honoured that people willingly share so much. One new client, (whom I’d never met before) about ten minutes into our conversation, said that he was surprised at how much he was revealing to a total stranger. Another, a long-term client, simply shared the frustrations of a challenging week. A third told me about a career changing moment that became an epiphany. Mostly I listen a lot. I ask a lot of questions.  I try not offer solutions. Coaching, I think, is based on a fundamental premise and belief that people innately have the ability and capacity to change their behaviour – however difficult that may be – and that people can make good choices. It is about helping others to identify and develop ways to improve what they do and how they do it, by seeing previously unthought-of possibilities and asking the right questions. The common coaching objective is to help people get better at what they are good at and to acquire qualities they may be lacking. It supports the notion that thoughts, feelings and perceptions produce behaviour, depending on how people pay attention, reflect on experience, and interpret both. When it succeeds, I see progressive behaviour changes becoming natural and predictable, where thinking, perceiving, emoting, deciding, and relating occur repeatedly. In essence, we are forming new ways of thinking and reflection that can help translate learning into behaviour change. It is always solution focused, trying to help people get out of the ‘bog’ of problem talk; often asking ‘what do you want’ rather than spending hours co-ruminating about a concern.