What is coaching?

International Coach Federation is the world´s biggest branch organization for coaching. They describe coaching as:

”Partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential”.

Coaching is not about giving advice, instructions or teaching!

Coaching is built on the belief that individuals and teams are whole, resourceful and capable of finding their own best answers and solutions. A coach helps you find, understand and use your potential. We help you understand and develop your strengths, capabilities and motivations and how you can use these to the best for yourself and in interaction with others.

Here is another great defintion of coaching:

”Coaching opens up people’s true potential, allows them to see, understand and use their own qualities and abilities – expressing them and acting upon them. It is helping people to learn, reflect and gain broader understanding and consciousness – rather than educating them”.

Coaching is not about giving advice, instructions or teaching

This is how ICF explains what sets coaching apart: “Consulting: Individuals or organizations retain consultants for their expertise. While consulting approaches vary widely, the assumption is the consultant will diagnose problems and prescribe and, sometimes, implement solutions. With coaching, the assumption is that individuals or teams are capable of generating their own solutions, with the coach supplying supportive, discovery-based approaches and frameworks. Mentoring: A mentor is an expert who provides wisdom and guidance based on his or her own experience. Mentoring may include advising, counseling and coaching. The coaching process does not include advising or counselling, and focuses instead on individuals or groups setting and reaching their own objectives”.

The value of coaching

For individuals, the value of coaching is stronger clarity, motivation, effectiveness and a better use of your resources. By implementing actions that support what is important, your self-confidence grows. For organisations, coaching leads to improved strategies and a broad ownership of the change process, as well as new and improved work practices. PWC recently did a study on the value of coaching on behalf of The International Coach Federation. Here are some of their key findings:

Important components in coaching

Coaching involves reflection and insights, listening, powerful questions, imagining scenarios and visualization, mapping and explorative exercises and translating to new practice every time!

More about coaching

Coaching is not therapy

Coaching - a professional field

Coaching is old age, not new age

A new paradigm

Great coaching and leadership books