Coaching that is limited to making the coachee better at what they have always done or fails to factor in the emerging business context is a poor investment. The coaching conversation must be informed by:
- The emerging economic environment.
- Tomorrow's customer's needs.
- The business strategy.
Within that future-oriented mindset, regardless of level, a number of coaching disciplines are common.
- Coaching isn't about giving advice. It's framing the conversation such that the coachee finds their own way (power to).
- What the coach believes the coachee will perceive. The coach must thus work from the belief that the agreed outcome will – not might – could or should happen.
- An experienced coach learns how to work from a beginner's mind.
- To coach is to listen in the way the coachee has always wanted to be listened to.
- New behaviour emerges only when the coachee changes the conversation they are having with themself. To coach is to help connect the coachee with their own story, ask great questions, introduce a new metaphor, share a compelling story, open the door to best practice and personally model the behaviour being sought.
- A great coach is tough-minded. Tough questions, candour and the capability to talk to power become the tools of the trade. Silence is invariably the best question of all.
- Coaching is a supportive behavioural dance.
Coaching mastery draws on a robust coaching model, meaningful executive experience, cultural relevance, interpersonal sensitivity and mental agility. As an example, if the coachee's role involves significant international experience, a coach without that experience is a poor fit.