Saturday, April 21, 2012

Coaching: What Is It? What's In It For You?

I have been a practicing coach for a over a decade now, and recently, at the encouragement of many of you reading this, entered iPEC Coaching School to up my game and earn my professional certification, as I look forward to impacting the society and world to a greater degree via this calling for the rest of my life. It has been so interesting to me that for most of the time I have been coaching, in the past, I have not been coaching but rather mentoring and consulting. Sigh!

What I have learned is the distinction between coaching and other helping modalities, friendship, mentoring, consulting and therapy, all of which may contain elements of coaching but which are not purely coaching.

I have learned that a coach is someone retained to provide: 

1) a non-judgmental, non-advising space for listening to the wishes and plans of the client, 

2) affirmation & validation of the client's plans and progress in execution of those wishes & their corresponding plans, 

3) examination of barriers to the execution of the client's plans and 

4) accountability for continued forward movement in execution of the client's plans, and especially in times of discouragement, breakdown and internal & external resistance. 

As I have practiced this stricter coaching model, I have been continually gratified by clients' expression of this process' impact on their clarity of thinking, sense of affirmation, relaxation, hopefulness and commitment to having certain results in their lives and organizations. These effects on client-leaders result in influential change in themselves, and by extension, their families, teams, organizations, networks, and society, that the world needs badly. This is important for we are all damaged whenever any one of our potential is not realized, and I see coaching as discipline which can make significant impact in reducing this damage.

By the way, I am looking for leaders and leadership teams to work with, and especially those who are challenged with influencing and implementing significant change. You know where to reach me if you need me. In the meantime, whether with me or some other coach, I encourage you think about coaching to help you towards a greater degree of your own potential.

Be well and blessed! :-)

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