By Keith Webb
“Coaching is not about certificates, it’s about being helpful to others” Keith Webb
Recently, Bob Tiede introduced me to The Coach Model by Keith Webb. Keith is a Professional Certified Coach, consultant, and speaker who specializes in leadership development. I found his book easy to read and very practical. I have already applied some of his techniques in conversations with family members, friends, and new acquaintances. In all honesty I find his approach refreshing and fun, though I do struggle with being patient and letting the conversation evolve at its own pace. Here are some highlights from the book.
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Coaching is an ongoing intentional conversation that empowers a person or group to fully live out God’s calling. Coaches empower people to think more deeply, discover their own path and experience empowerment to realize that path. Written as an equation Listen+ ask + allow = empower
A good coach and leader begins with this question in mind, “How can I, as a leader who is responsible for others, not teach or remind?” Remember, 1) it is not my responsibility to change others; the Holy Spirit can and will do it on his own–maybe with me but often without me, and 2) it is not my responsibility to correct everything that I think is out of sync with Scripture, company policy, or best practices.
Keith offers “The Coach Model” below to help coaches structure coaching times:
C–connect: connect with the person to build rapport and trust; follow-up on action steps and indulge in some good old-fashioned small talk. Demonstrate, and have a genuine interest in the person you coach.
If this is not the first meeting, this phase is also a good opportunity to follow up on the previous meeting.
What progress did you make in your action steps?
What? So what? Now what?
What? Designed to raise the coachees awareness of thoughts, emotions, and behaviors
So what? Reinforce learning by extending it into other areas of life. How can you extend the learning? Where else could you apply what you’ve learned? How do you want to do things differently in the future?
O–outcome: outcome is the intended result the coachee would like to achieve.
In this phase of the conversation the coach helps the coachee to reflect more deeply, and draw out how God is guiding. It’s critical to find out what the coachee considers to be the most valuable topic for each coaching conversation.
What would make today’s conversation meaningful for you?
Exploring: What would achieving this do for you?
Clarifying: What would success look like to you?
Focusing: That’s a big topic what would you like to focus on today?
Confirm the outcome: Are we making the progress you hope for in our
A–awareness: awareness is a reflective dialogue intended to produce discoveries, insights, and increased perspective for the coachee.
“You cannot teach a man anything. You can only help him discover it within himself.”–Galileo Galilei
Discoveries are a fundamental part of the coaching experience, and are the ultimate goal of the awareness step. Coachees make discoveries about themselves, their situation, their potential, their actions, their in action, their assumptions, their values. The thrill of discovery produces new thoughts emotions perspectives and determination.
Coaches stimulate or even provoke reflection.
“The most effective way to influence both individual and institutional behavior is to ask questions.”–Lyle Schaller
“Open questions are the single sure practice that invites critical thinking and effective learning.”–Jane Vella affirms that adults learn best through dialogue and questions that promote dialogue.
The purposes of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws the amount. Proverbs 20:5
What would excellent resolution of this look like?
What are possible next steps for the team?
Who might be able to help?
How do you prefer to learn new things?
To expand horizons and possibilities, ask questions from different perspectives: relational, financial, motivational, organizational, spiritual, etc.
Feedback: raise awareness by not giving feedback, draw out their own feedback.
What did you do well?
What could you improve?
How would you do differently next time?
C–course: Put feet to insights and discoveries by helping the coachee create action steps.
Coaches help people create action steps using the conversational skills of active listening and powerful questions. Coaching helps coaches to create action steps that will move them forward toward their goal. Remember, the best action steps are: simple, goal oriented, doable
H–highlights: Highlights focus on reviewing the parts of the conversation that the coachee found most meaningful. This reinforces the coachee’s insights and important points and strengthens his learning. Again, questions are the most powerful way to uncover the highlights. Ask the coachee what he/she felt were the highlights.
What do you want to remember from today’s conversation?
What was most useful to you from our conversation?
What are your takeaways from this conversation?
To truly grow an organization, leaders and teams must reach organizational objectives and develop the capacity of the people in the organization. An effective supervisor seeks to accomplish the 2 goals simultaneously, reaching organizational objectives while developing employees. The COACH model offers all leaders and coaches a great framework for achieving those goals.