Tag: coaching skills

3D Juggling 690: Why Again

Claire writes: “Curiosity is a fundamental part of a coaching style. And yet there is a fine line between me encouraging you to get curious about your situation and me finding out what I would like to know.

When we listen to people having conversations, I notice that ‘why‘ is often about the coach’s personal understanding of their situation. ‘What‘ is more often about the person’s. And when we are not sure, a good question can be: “Would it be useful to you to think why…?

In Making Questions Work, Dorothy Strachan talks about three stages in a conversation:

  • What?
  • So what?
  • Now what?

which can be even more useful than why!”

© 2015 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com

<!– // MAILCHIMP SUBSCRIBE CODE \\ –>
<a href=”http://eepurl.com/fRf1j”>Register here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email</a>
<!– \\ MAILCHIMP SUBSCRIBE LINK // –>

3D Juggling 689: Space and Pace

Nick writes: ‘We often think of coaching as creating a special space for a person to step back, often quite literally, from the pressures of day to day work and life to think about things differently. Indeed, the space we create between us offers a great opportunity for change.

Yet space is a bit like elastic. Too much space and the conversation can feel slow and lifeless, without definition or form. Too much pace and it can feel rushed, superficial and forced. Navigating space and pace is part of the, ‘How shall we do this?’ contract at the beginning of our conversation (the R in STOKeRS).

So I try to remember: just enough space to allow for reflection; just enough pace to keep things moving. It’s always a judgement call. How much space and pace does this person – in this situation, at this time – need? If in doubt, bring the question into the conversation!’

© 2015 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 Juggling 688: Negotiating the R

Claire writes: “Who decides what needs to happen in a conversation? Often our style seamlessly moves between a variety of roles. Senge, in the Fifth Discipline, talks about a spectrum of encounters leaders can have

  • telling
  • selling
  • testing
  • consulting
  • co-creating

At the telling end, the leader is fully prepared, knows what they are going to say, and takes responsibility for the conversation. It’s quick but doesn’t lead to much engagement. At the co-creating end, the leader doesn’t have an answer, there are no preconceived ideas about what will happen and the responsibility is shared. It takes much longer – and when it works well, engagement is high. Every stage is useful – especially when we can work well in any of them.

Asking: ‘How are we going to do this today?’ shares responsibility and allows room for negotiation and flexibility – which is a useful way of developing people.’

© 2015 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 Juggling 687: We don’t need coaches

Claire writes: ‘The world and the workplace don’t need coaches. We simply need people who can think and think creatively. Some of us can get there more easily is we are in the company of another.

I always think that the most value in conversations I have with people is what happens in the hour (or week) after they have left… when the flow of their thinking starts making the most difference.

The real coaching happens after the session is over!’

© 2015 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Subscribe to 3D Juggling

 

3D Juggling 686: Impact and intention

Claire writes: “We judge ourselves on our intention. If my intention is good, what I say is good. Except that my colleague judges me on the impact of what I have said. If it lands badly, we may take some hours, days or years to get over that. That’s why real play is useful. This means saying what we are thinking we might say out loud and hearing it to get a sense of whether its impact is what we intended.

Invite your colleague to try it out at different temperatures – say it in a very safe way. Now try it in a really challenging way.

  • Only a few groundrules
  • This works better if you stand up
  • We aren’t acting – and you are not taking the role of the person they are thinking of – you are just a face to talk to
  • For safety, it can be useful to put your hand up and move away so they are talking to your hand
  • Ask then – how did that sound – anything you want to change?

It might only take two or three goes, and it can make a significant difference to the quality of their conversation when it happens”

© 2015 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 Juggling 685: Adding Value

Claire writes: “This morning I had a conversation where I was almost silent while the person who was thinking travelled a great distance in their understanding of their situation. At the end of the call he said: “We don’t know how much value we add without adding any value at all. Thank you for letting me add value for myself”

Another lesson in staying silent and only asking questions when it’s useful!”

© 2015 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 Juggling 684: The only person that can save you is you

2015-05-26 18.05.49

Clare writes: ‘Claire and I saw a simple yet profound picture by an art student Shaza Al-Moswai this week, with the title “The only person that can save you is you”.

It was particularly pertinent as Claire was conducting a coaching demonstration, and she always stays out of the way of the person she is working with, so that they can resource themselves for the long-term.

In a conversation, it can be tempting to jump in and rescue someone, in a bid to be helpful. But as Claire asked in last week’s post, “is that useful?” How much more useful could we be, if we enabled the person we are talking with to save themselves?”

© 2015 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 Juggling 683: Bothered?

Claire writes: ‘Since we heard John Whittington affirm that useful conversations at work can be very different from helpful conversations, I have been thinking.

We give help and it might fulfil a need in the helper. What’s useful might be very different from what’s helpful.
Which is why one of the greatest gifts to a coaching style conversation is to be attentively not bothered. It’s their stuff – my role is to facilitate their thinking. If that’s useful.’

© 2015 3D Coaching Ltd
May be distributed freely. Please retain contact details: www.3dcoaching.com and send a copy/ link to info@3dcoaching.com Subscribe to 3D Juggling

3D Juggling 675: The e

Claire writes: “Every time we introduce STOKeRS

  • Subject – what shall we talk about?
  • Time – in the time we have, which bit of that?
  • Outcome – what do you want to be different by the end?
  • Know – how will you know (only useful if they haven’t said that in the O)
  • Role – how are we going to do this
  • Start – where shall we start?

as a way to create a great container for a conversation, we are asked what the e is for. The simple answer is that we all have different ideas, so we leave it out. Here are some of them:

  • Everything else (Alan) – Everything else that might be important to the person being coached
  • Exceptional circumstances (Clare) – Are there any exceptional circumstances that I need to know about that are going on for you in life right now?
  • Essence (Claire) – a question to you – what’s the essence of what I am hearing – is it a balance or is it heavily weighted towards facts or towards feelings?
  • Environment (Nicky) – what’s around in the environment eg political, economic, society, technology, legal, environmental or organisational?

And Su doesn’t think it’s necessary to have anything else in there – any more opening questions make it less simple!”

© 2015 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 Juggling 673: Gravy

Claire writes: ‘When I first started coaching in the 1980s, I worked with people who wanted to get involved in overseas aid and development work. We often talked about the balance of skill and knowledge and experience, and how an MA in Development Studies was probably not enough to work in a development project where people on the ground could do more for themselves than a Masters Graduate could.

There’s a lot of talk in the coaching world about knowledge – acquiring more theory and models. Yet that need for balance still stands – a balance of skill and knowledge and experience in equal measure.

A great conversation is like gravy. It may have begun with pans of vegetable water and juice from the meat… but it is most tasty when that’s been reduced to something very simple.’

© 2015 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 here to receive our blog posts every Monday by email