By Chally Kacelnik
Coaching can be a vague term. For many people, it can seem conceptually fluffy. At LKS Quaero, coaching is something we practice with rigour and planning. Here’s how we apply it with our clients.
Firstly, let’s get clear on terms. We define coaching as the process of unlocking a person’s potential to maximise their own performance. It’s about helping them to learn rather than teaching them to learn. It’s generally about telling. This is distinct from mentoring, which is a personal, helping relationship between a mentor and a mentee. Mentoring includes various degrees of support for the mentee’s personal development and is generally about showing.
In an organisational context, coaching should be about developing and improving the capabilities of participants in line with your organisational objectives. Ideally, this work should correspond with a capability framework that is linked to your overarching operating model.
For us, what this means in practice is that our coaching includes:
- Our Awareness Acceptance Will Drill model, to genuinely engage coachees in driving their own development rather than hoping they accept the terms of the coaching
- A consistent program of coaching activities – matched to profiling evidence, supporting both individual and organisational outcomes, and with flexibility for directional coaching to meet individual needs
- Customising the coaching program to the organisational context of each participant, making connections back to work constantly – setting objectives, tasks, and implementation of learning in concert with the coachees’ manager
- Utilisation of a reliable and valid profiling tool or tools to measure areas of development – incorporating self-assessment and 360º feedback
- A common organisational toolkit for driving sustainable business transformation and continuous improvement
- Individual development planning
- Means of tracking progress through consistent visual management and a plan-do-check-adjust cycle, with useful targets and measures linked to the profiling data
This design links the coaching to not only the individual’s personal development, but to sustainable team and organisational improvement. It’s something we not only practise with our clients, but teach them to practise also.