10 Tools for Effective Coaching and Why Coaching Works

As leaders, one of the many important skill sets is effective coaching in terms of leading their individuals and teams. Coaching is not about telling people what to do; it’s not about mentoring or dwelling on the past. Proper coaching is a powerful process that is designed to increase one’s self-awareness, which, in turn, facilitates more powerful conscious decision making, which leads to organized and focused action and finally provides accountability to measure results. If you want to take your coaching game to the next level and help those in need on your team or organization, review these ten coaching tips:

  1. The coach never sets the agenda and a coach never judges

    The team member sets the agenda (what they want to work on) and it is that agenda that a coach focuses on.  A coach assists people on their journey and never, ever decides what is best for the other person.

    A coach does not view the other person’s choices as good or bad, right or wrong as that would be judging.  Effective coaches learn to self manage and check their ego at the door. Having an open mind is critical in learning to coach.

  2. Detached involvement is powerful

    Detaching is one of the great and challenging tools a coach can learn because it helps prevent judgment and allows the coach to remain open, objective, and from getting too emotionally connected to a team member’s experience.

    Detaching has a purpose because even while a coach is intensely involved and empathetic with their situation, the coach does not step into their box.

  3. Learn to listen

    When you listen, you pay attention to someone else.  Coaching is not just about hearing words.   It is about really listening to what another person is saying, yearning for, and what their values are. Even in the pauses, there is meaning. This is the basis of being a servant leader: listening, learning, and being empathetic to the needs and concerns of others.

    Listening is at the center of all the transformations that take place in coaching. That’s where the powerful questions come from and then the answers from the client.  Again, it is critical to remain non-judgmental.  That will open up all possibilities and ideas to flow. Effective listening takes practice and a coach must always remain in the present moment.

  4. Three levels of listening

    1. Subjective everyday listening, where you relate what is being said only to yourself.
    2. Objective listening is deeper and completely focused on the other person.
    3. Intuitive listening is the deepest, where a coach gets to the heart of another person; using all their senses and intuitive abilities to know and help a client find the answers.

    Listening is tough to master, it takes practice.  When a coach trusts their intuition, they hear how things are said and what is not being said. Intuitive listening is the most valuable and powerful form of listening because it allows a coach to absolutely connect with others.

  5. Coaching can be useful to anyone and any topic

    Coaching can be applied to anyone, any situation, and on any topic.  A coach does not have to be an expert on the topic their team member chooses.  A coach is supposed to see things objectively, without bias, prejudice, or opinions.

    It’s critical that a coach see what is different beyond themselves.  How do they see different lifestyles, cultures, skin color, beliefs, preferences, customs, and choices?  Some of the greatest pain in the world is in the answer to this question.

  6. Learn how to accept people

    An effective coach does not use his or her own personal value system as the standard to decide what is best for others.  Each of us is on our own journey.  Living in the physical world means living in duality – light/dark, hot/cold, happy/sad, etc. One side of duality judges things as positive and the other side as negative. In order to be non-judgmental, we have to take a quantum leap past duality – away from ego – to a place where we are able to see other people for who they really are.

    An effective coach sees others with accuracy and with kindness.  Not to judge and have contempt, or feeling superior and finding fault.   A coach does not have to agree with their team member’s choices, but they owe them their respect in seeing them as who they are.

  7. Sabotage talk

    No matter who we are, based on our past experiences, our challenges, attitudes, and beliefs, we all have our inner voices or critics that block us from reaching our potential.

    Often people come to coaching feeling stalled. They don’t know how to get started. It’s like driving a car. When you know what you want you get into the car, turn on the ignition and drive to a specific destination. Instead, some people try driving by pushing the car from behind and usually it’s up a steep hill. It doesn’t have to be that difficult when you have the tools and knowledge to discover your goal or direction.

    An effective coach looks for these energy blocks that are impeding success, holding them back and limiting their potential or undermining confidence and progress.  An effective coach helps them see these possibilities in shifting their focus and energy from low self-esteem to higher awareness, seeing the truth and facts about themselves and their abilities, strengths, and gifts.

  8. Take action

    Coaches don’t give advice and they don’t tell people what to do. They ask people to take action and question whether that action is realistic, measurable, definable, and reachable.  Coaching helps others build their awareness, which in turn, opens up new possibilities.

    The coach is also there, side by side, providing an element of accountability to measure the progress.

  9. Dreams are real plans for success

    No one is born to fail. No one should live in failure. Hopefully, we learn from our failures, challenges, and falls, and our drive to continue, to get up and win by doing what we love and were born for, that’s where our deepest desire and life’s purpose come from.

    If one is true to their genuine desire to succeed and allow those truths to shine through blocking out all the negative untruths, a person’s dreams do become reality.  An effective coach helps others stay in control of their direction and purpose ~ on what they want as they are in the driver’s seat fully engaged — no longer standing on the sideline, being uncertain, and waiting for things to happen.

  10. Keep learning and stretching yourself

    Coaching is incredibly valuable, life increasing knowledge. It promotes vision and purpose, builds happiness and success, and enables others to meet their dreams and potential.

    Coaching is always useful, surprising, emotional, exciting, and utterly gratifying work. The coaching tools you learn enable you to always keep learning and changing…to improve, stretch, gain new vision, and promote your purpose in life. A Better Leader specializes in helping you coach your leaders to better connect with their team members and provides inspirational and actionable development for your leaders

About the Author Chris Craddock

As the leader of Projections' production team, Chris loves to inspire others to perform at the highest levels! From the most challenging leadership opportunities to brainstorming the latest topics leaders want to learn about, Chris provides clear direction and vision.

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