Daniel Robin &
What We Mean by "Coaching"
Coaching is ...
- a practical set of interpersonal skills
- a systematic way to effectively focus on
learning, making changes, working through obstacles, and achieving desired results
- a style of management based on shared power,
where the "coach" holds a person accountable for the priorities and commitments
they have made for themself
Coaching is NOT ...
- Therapy -- although the process and
results of coaching can be therapeutic, by contrast, therapy focuses on healing the past; coaching
examines practical actions and attitudes necessary to move forward at a new level of
- Consulting -- many consultants offer
coaching as an additional service, but consulting and coaching differ in that its
the consultants job to provide ANSWERS and be an expert within a subject area;
however, a coach facilitates DISCOVERY by assisting others in finding their own unique
- Teaching -- similar to consulting,
where the consultant acts as content expert, a teacher or trainer facilitates learning in
a particular subject area. A coach, however, assists others in doing whatever is necessary
to reach their stated goals and get the job done. Learning occurs in both cases, however, with
coaching, the "curriculum" is designed by the person being coached to meet
their unique needs.
"Coaching is not just a set of
tools or techniques -- not fad-of-the-week `false empowerment -- but rather it
represents a shift in assumptions...." - Daniel Robin
Providing an environment where people can
self-manage is at the core of what people need to buy in and make this work.
What are the eight elements
of coaching? In a nutshell,
coaching is about establishing a productive, results-oriented context with clear goals and
agreements, being present and "in service" to these goals, and effective
communication skills to address issues in ways that build trust.
Coaching often involves devising support
structures, brainstorming, and evaluating options. The "client" not only
participates more fully in finding their own answers -- providing techniques for resolving
issues when coaching is not available -- but also discovers their own strengths and areas
for improvement, resulting in perhaps the most important reward of all: self-knowledge.
To assess your current
level of mastery in the key coaching elements, click here
Note to managers, supervisors,
If you've ever wondered what makes people
want to do a good job, it is because they choose to. The power to sustain your influence
over time comes not from position but from voluntary agreement. The shift from positional
to personal power is a matter of knowledge and skill. There is now a greater demand for
managers, supervisors and executives to have ready the "people skills" of
coaching to get results through collaboration, mutual accountability, and shared
Be sure to check out what recent clients have said about this work.