Coaching skills are a valuable tool in leadership and management, empowering professionals to transform themselves as leaders and effectively manage their teams.
By developing coaching skills, a manager can prove to be of excellent value to both their team and the organisation as a whole. An effective coach is equipped with the skills and knowledge to help their team achieve professional and personal goals, while proactively working towards organisational objectives.
In this blog, we explore the various aspects of coaching through our insights into a day in the life of a coach.
What is coaching?
This is a partnership in which a coach inspires and motivates a trainee to adapt their thinking. A coach guides this shift, playing an active role in the establishment of personal and professional goals, and supporting the trainee in pursuing and accomplishing their goals.
The purpose of coaching is to facilitate learning and development, maximise potential, and enhance performance. It provides a safe and non-judgmental space in which the individual forms their own conclusions and assumes responsibility for their own professional development and career progression.
What do coaches do?
A coach will make learning and development possible through support, encouragement, and by presenting opportunities for reflection. Unlike mentoring, which is more directive, the coach won’t impart knowledge, but will rather guide the trainee as they establish their goals and plan their next steps towards achieving them.
A coach will ask the trainee questions, practice active listening, and aid them to contemplate and explore issues. They’ll help trainees to identify their own strengths and weaknesses, evaluate their options, and make informed decisions about the actions they need to take.
A day in the life of a coach
The nature of coaching means a lot of time spent planning and reflecting, more so than working directly with the trainee.
They’ll consider their own objectives and performance alongside the goals and progress of the trainee. Coaches assess progress continually, asking frequent and relevant questions:
- Has the trainee made notable improvements?
- Is their contribution to the organisation increasing?
- Is coaching having a positive impact on the organisation?
Asking these questions allows a coach to adapt their approach, highlight and celebrate progress, and focus on specific areas of coaching that the trainee may need more support on.
Below are some of the activities a coach will perform during their day.
Although not a rule, it’s common for a coach to begin their day by journaling. This mindful activity allows the coach to set out their intentions for the day in a tangible way. It’s been found that making a point of stating your goals in writing increases your chances of achieving them – not to mention the benefits of being held accountable for the actions you take towards achieving them.
Coaches often encourage their trainees to try journaling and goal-setting – for good reason. This practice lays the foundations for the trainee(s) to move forward, providing them with focus and serving as a reference point to assess progress. Journaling is also a great tool to gauge whether the action agreed is bringing the trainee, the team, and the organisation closer to their goals.
Coaching in one-to-one sessions or group coaching
This is when the practical aspect of the coaching begins. A theme is likely to have been agreed upon beforehand — this theme could be a specific problem that the trainee or the team is facing —and possibly also the desired outcome from the session. During the session, the coach will work with the individual or group through possible solutions or options before encouraging the trainees’ to make a decision and to commit to a course of action.
As the session comes to a close, the trainee will summarise what the main outcomes of the session have been, and the coach will then urge accountability – a powerful driver in the achievement of goals. Accountability sets expectations, establish common aims, and strengthens the organisational culture.
Reviewing and planning
Towards the end of the day, the coach will review the session, assess progress, and determine the next steps.
They’ll analyse the progress of the team and whether there have been any performance improvements. Importantly, the next session will involve discussing the previously agreed action and, more specifically, the outcomes.
This planning and reviewing allow the coach to gain a holistic view of the progress and sustain momentum.
Book a CMI level coaching course with us
Coaching functions as a source of support, encouragement, and accountability, producing opportunities for employees to explore their potential and deliver the best of themselves in the service of their organisation. Through coaching, trainees acquire clarity, focus, and perspective, on the back of which they can channel their energy to contribute more notably to the success of the organisation.
We offer CMI-accredited coaching qualifications at Level 5 and Level 7, as well as a coaching masterclass, which can help you to address issues and make it possible for all parties to strive for their goals. Crucially, you’ll learn to embed a culture of coaching within your organisation to create a positive space that benefits you, your team, and the organisation as a whole.
You can browse all our courses on our course page and book a place by clicking on the ‘Book your place’ button.
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