Thomas Leonard, called by many the father of modern coaching, always said everyone can be a coach. I’m not altogether sold on that. What I do believe, though, is that everyone can and should use coaching skills. The kind of clear, open communication, deep listening, and support that exist within a coaching relationship can be learned and would enhance all our relationships.
The International Association of Coaching created nine Coaching Masteries™ that create a framework that describe excellence in coaching. They also describe a set of skills that could enhance the work of managers, health care professionals, teachers, parents, and, in fact, anyone who interacts with other people.
Here’s a quick look at the IAC Coaching Masteries™:
1. Establishing and maintaining a relationship of trust.
This is about creating a supportive relationship and a safe space for personal transformation. What would it be like if every teacher practiced this skill? How much more would our children learn?
2. Perceiving, affirming and expanding the client’s potential.
This one could change the world if we all tried it. What can you notice that’s special in everyone you encounter/ Do you let them know?
3. Engaged listening
Most managers have had training in Active Listening. And many forget to use the skills. Are you paying full attention to the conversations you’re in? Are you attuned to the subtleties? Body language? Intonation? There’s valuable information there.
4. Processing in the present.
How often do you drift in a conversation? How often are you focused on anything but the present moment? Staying in the present helps us avoid judgements. It stops the act of putting things off and the fantasy that all we need to do is wait. Processing in the present keeps coach and client, manager and staff, teacher and student focused on what is really going on.
Sounds simple, right? This is about going beyond simple talking to being aware of all aspects of communication.
How can we communicate in ways that are clear, simple and direct? How can we help someone else set and maintain clear goals? Managers should have this as an integral part of their skill set. Health care workers could use this Mastery to work towards real health.
8. Inviting possibilities.
Are you curious? Do you wonder, “what if?” Do you explore not only all the available options but invent a few more? this is expansion a its best.
9. Helping clients create and use supportive environments.
How can we all help each other develop and maintain support networks? How can teachers, managers, parents, friends encourage growth?
That’s a quick glimpse of a system that can work for all of us. How can you incorporate these into your life?