One of the main pillar of coaching is that the client or coachee has the answer(s) to his/her challenge(s). The role of a coach is to help him to discover that and to feel empowered to action on the challenge. To enable that, the coach must create the space for the client to discover the answers.
The benefits of that are:
1. Empowered. The client has the answer(s) to the challenge(s) that he is facing. To find the answers is a matter of empowering them to listen to their thoughts and feelings. Giving them the courage and confidence to decide on a course of action to be taken.
2. Ownership. The client will have a sense of ownership around the solutions or actions to be taken. After all, the actions are decided by the client. This is a key motivating factor to executing the actions as oppose to being told to do it.
3. Accountability. There is a greater sense of accountability to action on the ideas or steps to be taken as a result of ownership. The added “sense of accountability” will come with having a partnership with the coach.
How would a coach create that space for the client? Here are some ways:
- Listen. Listen to what the client has to say and be comfortable with silence. In my experience, most of that “silence” will be taken up the client as they talk through the issue, hear their own words and through that creates awareness in themselves.
- Patience. Be patient and not try to lead the discussion or the thought process. Let the client work it through.
- Ask questions. Ask questions that will move the thoughts through the next stage. Open the door for more discussion and brainstorming.
Based on my coaching experience, each of us has the answers to our own questions. We just need someone to help us discover that at times.