“Be careful little ears what you hear
When flattery leads to compromise
The end is always near
Be careful little lips what you say
For empty words and promises
Lead broken hearts astray”
– Slow Fade Lyrics by Casting Crowns.
There is a huge conflict in our world today – the ability to say words and not follow up with action. We meet people that aren’t conscious that words are powerful – it is like raw eggs, when it is broken, it’s hard to mold the cracks.
It has become a norm to think in just one direction, just like every other person. For example, the society, schools and home has been raised in certain ways – to think, feel, express and live in a particular order.
In Coaching, this is a crucial aspect where Direct Communication comes in. It is “to help the Coachee to see and experience other perspectives and possibilities about their lives, and that is not necessarily in the form of a powerful coaching question”.
In any coaching session, the coach is paying attention to the following things:
– notices what is working, to enhance coachee’s progress
There is always something that works. As human, even when we are complaining about all the wrong things that are happening to and around us, there is still some light in the thick dark room, when we patiently listen.
The coach is to note the unspoken words and even the gestures during the conversation that can pinpoint areas that can lead to progress.
One week ago, I had a meet and greet session with a friend (that we recently reconnected), she explained her worry about leaving the professional world for the past 3 years, while she was taking care of her kids. She was worried that the ‘gap years’ will be her biggest barrier to re-enter the job market.
I asked her, ‘what skills do first-time mothers learn while raising a child in the first year?’ We were able to highlight the following skills, ‘patience, creativity, flexibility, unexplainable strength, multitasking and how to educate a learner’
I asked, ‘are these skills need and relevant in the workplace?’ She answered in the affirmative. I pushed further and asked, ‘why do you feel you had gap and skill gaps?’ She paused and laughed loudly. Her next sentence was beautiful, she said, “it was only my thoughts, I didn’t see myself differently all along”.
– adjust the coaching approach in the direction of the coachee’s needs.
Without interrupting the thoughts of the coachee, the coach has different methods to get the coachee to think outside of the current box, while ensuring that the concerns of the coachee are met.
– support the clients in reframing perspectives.
In terms of perceptive, it can be looked into as what we feel, hear and see, using our own filters and positioning.
Our filters/positioning – the question that we ask here can look like this: How do I feel doing this thing?
Opposite filters/positioning – looking at things through the filters of another person): the question can look like this – how will your boss see you if he saw that you did this?
Observing positioning – this is the when you are not in your filter or the opposite, but watching between the first and second. A question can be like this – how would you say, or feel about what is happening to those people?
The beautiful thing about the different positioning is that, it is likely that our answers are going to change just based on where we stand, point of view or our preconceptions.
The coach should explore these different areas to see the alignment of thoughts and even ways of helping the coachee see, feel and think from a progress point.
One of the main reasons we have conversations with someone else is because we are seeking CLARITY (and this happens every day).
What we all need is clarity. We will pay more to get clarity if we have the means or be desperate enough. Clarity is the prerequisite to trust.
We speak with people and we are looking into that conversation with our head and mind, trying to see if there is clarity (being able to be understood and to understand). It is after this that we are able to trust the ear and advice of that person.
Good Communication is the bridge between confusion and clarity.
As a coach, the initial value you have to see to bring to the conversation is clarity, then trust can be gained and the real changes that the coachee desires can follow suit.
My Takeaway from this session are:
-There is no single direction/approach that will work for all Coachee, as a Coach, you need to be vast with a number of approaches to help your Coachee move in the direction of their goals.
-Ascertain clarity as soon as possible, to be able to make progress in the coaching relationship.
-Perspective are powerful and when people look at thing differently, it becomes easier to move into action too.