The Freeosk Blog

Create a Coaching Habit

Our People Leader Book Club just finished reading The Coaching Habit by Michael Bungay Stanier.  The book focuses on a few simple techniques anyone can use while coaching up, down or across…and even at home! 

Bonus points – the content also supports our practice of Situational Leadership.  There are very strong connection points to diagnosing development levels and providing the right direction and support to create a culture of self-reliant problem solving.

Everyone shared the ONE BIG THING they took away from the book.  Here are a few coaching key points:

  • Don’t ask questions that are leading or rhetorical.  Instead ask ‘What else?’, ‘What’s on your mind?’, ‘What’s the real challenge here for you?’, ‘What do you want?’.  And don’t think about a response while the other person is talking.  Talk less and listen actively!
  • It’s easy to jump into advice mode.  We all want to help!  Start with ‘What’s the real challenge here for you?’ to allow for independent problem solving.
  • When someone comes to you with a challenge, ask, ‘How can I help?’ instead of inserting yourself into the solution.  The answer they provide will help you diagnose their development level. (from Situational Leadership)
  • So often we ask multiple questions at once.  This does not allow the other person to stop and think – they try to deflect the multitude of questions being directed at them.  Ask a question, pause and wait three seconds for a response.
  • Coaching should happen informally, every day.   Ongoing feedback leads to growth and development!

Check out The Coaching Habit if you want to learn more. 

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