Center for Coaching Certification

Coaching a Project Manager

For example, a coaching client was responsible for overseeing a specific project.  One of the managers on the project was simply uninterested in completing their work.  This coaching client was at a loss as to how to make it happen because without direct authority over the manager, it became a power struggle.  In a coaching session, we explored the situation.  Questions I asked included: Coaching a Project Manager

  • How does this manager view the working relationship?
  • What are the long-term benefits of a good working relationship?
  • How are you able to help this manager in their job or career?
  • What benefit is there for this manager to complete the work?
  • What approach have you taken in the past?
  • What approach will you take now?

Through answering these questions, the coaching client felt they had a better understanding of what was happening and created a plan of action to move forward.  Specifically, the coaching client decided on these action steps:

  • Schedule time for a social lunch with the manager.
  • Ask the manager what they wanted to support their work and discuss ways to help.
  • At the next project meeting, ask each team member to list the benefits of completing the project successfully.
  • Ask the team to list remaining action items and create a timeline.

As a result of the plan the coaching client created, the client successfully rebuilt their relationship with the manager and saw results with the entire team.

An added bonus: during the coaching, the client experienced coaching questions learned by their coach in coaching certification and realized the value of using the techniques in their conversations.  When a professional coach models skills from their coach training, the client learns new coaching skills.


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