“Insights Into Effective Coaching” equipped me some hands on tools I could immediately apply at my workplace. It demystified the role as a coach, painted a picture of what good coaching could look like, gave me a roadmap, got me out of a rut and made me want to know more. Gregory Arcement. Youth Worker, Switzerland
Foreword By Keith Nelson
Director of Coaching Programmes, Møller Institute, at the University of Cambridge.
I had the pleasure of encountering Julian, Miroslav and Karen in my capacity of Director of Coaching at the University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education. At that time, they were setting out on their coaching careers.
I have yet to meet anyone who has started their career as a coach, and Julian, Miroslav and Karen are no different. They each bring their unique experiences to their coaching practices.
Excellent coaching is strongly principled, values-driven and authentic. It can be nothing else, otherwise it is a house built on sand.
These three authors combine this philosophy with their life experiences, wisdom and an openness to learning, which they bring to their coaching practices.
Julian is a deep-thinking educationalist whose thoughtfulness, calm demeanour and grasp of complexity creates an empowering learning environment for his clients. The warm thinking space he provides enables his clients to relax and explore their inner thoughts at their own pace.
Miroslav is a man who refused to be broken by his harrowing experiences in a war-torn . He escaped as a refugee to establish himself as a successful and dynamic coach in Canada. He is an inspirational role model and demonstrates what can be achieved by energy, determination and resilience.
The first two words that sprang to my mind when meeting Karen were compassion and warmth. Those first impressions have remained with me over the years since. Her natural presence creates a safe environment for her clients. Karen truly coaches with both her head and her heart.
These three authors have combined their perspectives into this book. Each brings their unique presence into this thoughtful, well-crafted and hugely authentic book.
Why did we write this book?
We are coaching practitioners from three different areas of coaching practice: educational, executive and life. By answering commonly asked questions from these different areas, we aim to help clients understand what coaching is, how the coaching process is structured and what kind of questions a client can expect in a coaching session. To demystify these questions, we have included a related Exercise at the end of each chapter.
Our hope is that this book will have a broad appeal to students, teachers, employees, managers and leaders — to anyone who is curious about coaching and wants to learn more about it. We also hope that this book will help professional coaches, who teach coaching, and coaches-in-training, who want to pursue coaching as a career path, as well as leaders who want to apply coaching in their schools and organizations.
How this book is structured
The book is in four parts.
If you are looking to learn why coaching is in demand, what proven coaching outcomes are and how coaching can help you grow, our perspectives are in Part 1. Here we address how coaching differs from other professions such as therapy, counseling, consulting and mentoring; and as well discuss the importance of coaching models and how an effective coaching approach can help individuals and organizations.
Part 2 explores what makes coaching conversations effective and what the hallmarks of effective coaching conversations are — as well as the role of silence and congruence in coaching sessions.
Part 3 focuses on understanding how an effective coaching process can help you achieve transformational change. We discuss the benefits of coaching during change, how a coaching presence helps you with transformation and to what extent a transformational coaching journey is self-reflective.
In the fourth and final part, our intention is to help you choose the right coach for you. This is not an easy thing to do, as we all have different preferences and expectations. In addition, we discuss the pros and cons of online coaching and face-to-face coaching, and how to prepare for an effective coaching conversation.
What could this book do for you?
This book is aimed at helping you learn about coaching, decide if coaching is the right path for you and if it is, then move confidently forward with a well-informed coaching investment so you can get the most value and benefit out of your coaching.
What we have noticed when working with hundreds of clients is that when people are asked to reflect on their own experience of being coached, one thing often crops up. People feel they could have taken the plunge and begun much earlier — “How come I haven’t done this sooner?” Coaching has brought them forward and helped them grow.
There are a number of reasons people hesitate or put off hiring a professional coach. It’s ok to do this. When you are ready, you will know when to seek a professional coach. Our answers to the most commonly asked coaching questions from our three different perspectives, will help you with that decision. Let’s be honest — personal reflection is not easy, but when you have a coach you can trust and who creates a safe space for you, personally reflecting is much. We want to encourage you to ask questions and seek answers.
Our aim is to help you take action.
- As the book is structured around answering practical questions with their related thoughtful activities, you can dip into it easily to really engage with a particular theme and gain powerful personal insights.
- As we answer some of the most commonly asked coaching questions, we hope to engage your curiosity and creativity.
- As we offer you our different personal perspectives, you can compare and deepen your understanding of coaching.
- As we give you a choice of perspectives, you have more chance of finding someone you better resonate with in your particular situation.
- As we invite reflection, you will gain more awareness of your present situation and more clarity about how effective coaching can help you right now.
- As we outline the steps required to find the right coach, you can prepare for taking confident action and achieving results.
We hope this book will give you greater clarity and provide you with insights into effective coaching. Sometimes, this is just a question away. Feel free to ask us today by emailing us.
How to use this book
We suggest that you don’t read this book in one go. Instead, look for ideas and questions that resonate with you. We want you to have fun while you increase your curiosity about coaching and coaching insights, so you’ll have different perspectives when you get to the stage of looking for a professional coach.
Each chapter concludes with a related Activity containing questions and/or exercises. You are welcome to read them, complete them in depth, skip them or not do them at all.
Have fun and use them to suit yourself as you see fit.
If you do wish to complete an Activity, you’ll find it contains space for you to use, if you wish to answer it right there on the spot.