In the last couple of days I’ve read a short book called The Coaching Habit. As I write it’s on offer at just 99p on Amazon UK on the Kindle which makes it a 5 Star Bargain. I thoroughly recommend you buy it because it has lots of science to back it up, is unusually well written and very funny in places. The only thing I felt was missing was a one page summary for easy reference, so here’s one I made earlier to put into Evernote in the hope it gets into my brain and changes my habit of trying to give all the answers, instead of asking better questions.
Seven Great Coaching Questions can deliver you from having to have all the solutions to help people find them for themselves: Ready?
1) What’s On Your Mind? There are scientific reasons Facebook asks you this!
2) And What Else? Repeat this after listening, repeat this after listening, and repeat this… you get the idea
3) What’s The Real Challenge Here For You? Cuts to the chase, provides focus.
4) What Do You Want? Gives ownership of the issue to them and helps them see possibilities
5) How Can I Help? – or ‘Just so I’m clear, what do you want from me?’ tones this down a little 🙂
6) If You Say Yes To This, What Are You Saying No To? What Projects, People or Patterns will be affected?
7) What Was Most Useful To You? Every interaction can be a learning moment if you give time for this kind of reflection.
Of course just learning these questions rote and parroting them out formulaically isn’t the aim. What was ‘most useful to me’ was the reminder that you learn more by being curious than telling everyone what you know.
That wisdom was underlined for me in my Bible reading from this morning where it says “Everyone should be slow to speak, quick to listen” – instead of the other way round.