3D Ideas 807: What’s It For?

Claire writes: “GDPR – decluttering for data – is trending as a discussion topic in the UK this month! We realise we have always been hot on privacy. And we also haven’t paid enough attention in the past to what we are keeping data for. So although it’s been a pain, that ‘what’s this for?’ question is proving useful as we streamline our processes. If you want to know what we are thinking, it’s here.

If you’re looking for some kind of external support, the ‘what’s it for?’ question is also useful. We encourage people to have a triage conversation with someone if you’re not sure what you’re looking for – because there isn’t a one size fits all for coaching. You may be looking for

  • an external thinking partner to meet a few times a year
  • someone to travel with you through the transition into a new role
  • a one off conversation to enable you to look differently at a situation
  • something else

(This is also useful if you’re not sure whether coaching is for you or whether a talking therapy might be better. Rather than go on a waiting list and sign up to 6 sessions, a triage conversation can help you get clear on what you take where).

So if you or colleagues are looking for a coach, be clear on what you want to be different by the time the process is over and that will also help you know what you’re looking for. Getting what’s useful is more important than what a potential provider is offering, and indeed than chemistry. It will also save you time and money. Which is why we don’t have fixed term engagements – because we have no idea how long or how many conversations you might need until we start. One might be enough!”

PS We are also sharing new learning on our youtube channel if you’re interested!

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

 

3D Ideas 806: Violins

Claire writes: “My overriding memory of my teenage homework years were crying at the dining room table with my books because our neighbour in the other half of our semi-detached house was practising the violin. I’d like to share joyful memories of recognisable tunes. Alas the boy who became a world famous violinist used to play the same two notes over and over again. Painful for my ears – and amazing for the audiences with whom he shared his musical talent.

Mastery – for musicians – is about drills and scales – breaking down their skill and getting brilliant one note at a time. Practice, and listening to what you’re doing is worth more than listening to CDs, orchestras and buying music books.

Most of us have conversations at work in one way or another. How many times have we heard – ‘your call is being recorded for training or monitoring purposes?’ That has a smack of big brother – but listening to how we do what we do every so often is an important part of getting better. This is especially true, I think, for coaching – practice makes perfect (well, great enough!).”

We have some mentor coaching groups starting up if you’re a coach and want to work on the way you have conversations in the room.

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Would you like to receive these blog posts every Monday by email?

 

3D Ideas 805: In the Muscle

Claire writes: “This term I have embarked on a significant piece of professional development starting with a 6 day immersion programme. One of my fellow delegates talked about getting the skill into the muscle. Along with a massage that went deep into my physical muscle, there was much to ponder.

The Asaro Tribe say that “Knowledge is only a rumour until it lives in the muscle.” We practised and simplified over and over again so that we are continue to embody what we are learning. That’s the joy of development and also an insight that the journey to mastery and simplicity is lifelong.

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

3D Ideas 804: Fishing Boy

Claire writes: “I love this picture of a man and a child fishing. Their proximity and focus on discovering something together – even though the father may be an expert fisherman – models well what we are learning about effective conversations at work.

Where and how we sit can impact how the conversation evolves. I remember talking with hospital consultants who were using a coaching approach with colleagues to offer peer support. Efficiency meant that the peers arrived at the end of the clinic and sat… in the patients chair. The consultants knew the conversations were not the best they could be. So they decided to swap chairs and the quality improved. They had been treating their colleagues like patients.

Your context will be different. But changing to a different chair, a different environment, or moving from a position that feels like reporting back may well change the quality of the conversation.”

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com


Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

3D Ideas 803: Coaching and Dementia

Claire writes: “It’s great to get feedback from people on our courses. Listen to what happened in someone’s 10 minute conversation. This was in church. It could equally have been at the GP’s surgery or with a neighbour.

‘You may think that the end of a church service when there is still more to come and the vicar has to rush onwards is not the best time to coach someone. However, a 10 minute conversation was clearly life-changing for someone recently diagnosed with Dementia. Caught between family pressures, choices of medication and the consequences of both, and in the confusing, frightening shock of the diagnosis, she wanted to talk about this. My immediate offer was “Yes we can talk – either now for 10 minutes or next week for half an hour at some point”.

Her choice of time and place and my setting a clear contract from the start. In 10 minutes of quiet, stood up, with direct questions, the nutshell problem and feelings were articulated and so she felt clearer about her feelings, her dilemma and was able to put aside the feeling of being caught and not knowing how to proceed. Just articulating the problem of her choices gave her back a sense of control. She was then able to talk clearly to her family later and they together resolved the problems at that point. I suspect half an hour would have been her invitation to me to join her in her pit, but 10 minutes gave us a sense of purpose in how this conversation needed to change something for her now. I was sure there were more conversations to follow and some sympathy needed, but at that point she needed not sympathy but clarity and control, and a quick to-the-point, coaching conversation was the best way forward.’

This works!”

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com

3D Ideas 802: Completely Lost

Claire writes: “As professionals – in whatever field we work in – we learn that we need to know what we are doing. What I continue to learn is that I almost never know what we are doing in a conversation, and my role is to be brave and hold my nerve.

We spend several days a week training people to have transformational conversations (where you can see in someone’s eyes or their body that something significant has shifted). And what happens next? Firstly the facilitator of the conversation turns to us with a surprised ‘how did that happen?’ look… and then we often see a look of panic that says ‘Help! I have absolutely no idea what to do now’. That loss of control is scary. And transformation is significant. Of course we are completely lost – something fundamental has changed. Thank goodness for the question ‘Where are we now?'”

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com  Sign up to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

3D Ideas 801: Why we don’t like the listening word

Claire writes: “We have just acquired an automatic car and early on, there were a fair number of times when I tried to change gear with the brake… until I learned to perch my left leg right out of the way (thanks to a top tip from someone in the back!). It takes time to change behaviour.

Most of us haven’t ever been taught to listen – it was something we did even before birth – and we do it how we do it. Physicians listen to diagnose, plumbers listen to fix… and those of us who have been trained to listen do what we normally do. If coaching is a conversation where someone feels heard and knows something at the end of the conversation about their own stuff that they did not know at the beginning, I am listening so that you understand more about your own stuff – not so that I understand.

We are supporting people to develop new behaviours. Listening in detail to the story and reflecting that back is what many of us have learned to do. It also rarely gives new insight to the other person. That’s why, in training, we invite people to notice, and don’t use the listening word. When they offer back two or three headlines (not a summary – themes) to the person who told their story, that person is astonished how much more they felt heard. More often than not it gives them new insights into their own stuff. We always offer headlines with a question mark. After all we are noticing, not diagnosing. Try it!

Interestingly when I am mentoring coaches, we listen together to recordings of them working with their people. Every time I ask ‘what did you notice this time’, they have heard in a deeper way something which is of much greater value to the person with whom they are working.

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com  Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

3D Ideas 800: 18 Seconds

Claire writes: “Research into the conversations doctors have with patients says that on average they listen to a patient for 18 seconds before the expert in them interrupts. Tom Peters, in an insightful 3 minute video, suggests that habit goes much wider than the medical world.

When you’re used to having conversations where you input or gather data or make quick decisions, it’s quite a shift to listen well. “The single most significant strategic strength that an organisation can have is not a good strategic plan but a commitment to strategic listening on the part of every member of the organisation” says Peters.
That’s why so much of our time is spent developing listening skills in people at work. Next week, we’ll tell you why we’ve stopped using the word listening!

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

3D Ideas 799: Laundry Basket

Claire writes: “Alan describes the conversations we have as a place to help someone sort through their mountain of laundry. The role of the coach – and indeed the mentor, supervisor or manager (usually) is not to wash their clothes – but to support someone else to sort stuff out enough that they can move forward themselves. And to notice when they choose to leave somes stuff at the bottom of the basket.

That’s why ‘What would you like to think about?’ can be a more useful question than the one that implies ‘What do you want me to do?’. If you are a manager who feels like they are always doing the washing, it might be worth changing the question!”

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com  Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email

3D Ideas 798: Backstitch

Claire writes: “Sewing. As you begin to hand sew and pass a needle through thick fabric, you can never be quite sure where the needle will come up – until you see the point coming through and decide whether to keep pulling it out, or reposition it.

The same is true of questions. We ask them, and they are answered. We can’t be sure what to ask next until we see where the last one gets us. All we do is wait, listen and notice… and only then form the next question. And if there has been a big movement, that might be as simple as ‘Where are we now?'”

© 2018 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email