Home » Blog » Balancing Challenge and Support in Coaching Practice
Are you thin skinned or a thick skin coach?
Thin skinned coaches rely a lot on the relationship who always depend on supporting them. Thick skinned coaches are robust and not affected by anything that the clients speak about.
Think about it. Novice coaches always emphasize a lot on the relationship. The belief here is that if the relationship is taken care of, then the rest of it will fall in its place. If the relationship doesn’t have its space and is hurt, then the coaching also does not take place fully.
Carl Rogers worked in the mid 1900s who was a pivotal thinker who presented a humanistic and people-centered approach for the human development movement. He presented, ‘Self writing reflex’, given the right relationship, people can naturally heal themselves. So for the therapist, the role was to create that kind of a relationship. This and many other theories brought out the inner human potential to resolve the challenges by themselves and heal the space.
Carl has brought out some necessary and recommended conditions that need to be in place for any human to self-heal oneself.
To bring these to life, the therapist and the client need to sign up for a contract of collaboration. It is not to create positions and strata, it is to facilitate a collaborative process.
Clients come with an itch which is the problem or the incongruence. The itch needs a scratch. This is where the therapist needs to be congruence and not any type of incongruence. The therapist needs to view the client with unconditional positivity with a belief that inside them they have something positive to wait for.
Empathy requires a strong sense of emotional intelligence of the client. The client needs to experience that the therapist is able to empathize with their situation.
Humanistic approaches are central to the coaching practice.
That brings us to figure out how we build coaching relationships based on these principles.
#1 Build Credibility: Coach a diverse segment of clients. Help them understand what we have done before.
#2 Matching. Try to build commonalities between the client and yourself as a coach. People like to meet more people just like me or at least believe that you are just like them. This helps you create a positive outcome.
#3 Contracting. Set a framework or the set of boundaries that will help a client set the right expectations out of the conversation. This also means what stays within the coaching room and what goes out on paper.
#4 Trust. Demonstrate trust. Help clients understand how much you could be trusted and show examples of it.
#5 Empathy. Use simple reflections. There is scientific evidence that demonstrating empathy broadens the coaching space between the coach and the client.
Everything until here is fundamental to any coaching practice. It provides the necessary support.
But, coaching is beyond just support.
Coaching is about finding the balance between support and challenge to help create a momentum for change. It is to be able to create a space where the client is not being judged or the conversation is not being misused.
You don’t have to be the client’s friend when you are moving them into a space of challenge. You are friendly.
Since coaching has a huge effect on employee success. Employees who are coached to develop their performance gain new skills and a greater understanding of their position in the company.
The following concepts can be used to create coaching relationships.
Ways you can overcome coaching barriers are:
Coaching relationship is a one-on-one arrangement between a client and a coach focused on achieving goals in business, career, and lifestyle.
Humanistic approaches are at the heart of coaching. As a result, a humanist coaching strategy aims to unlock that ability, allowing people to achieve their full potential.
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28th July, 2021
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