Coaching Challenges and Solutions 1 of 9

Coaching Challenges and Solutions 1 of 9

Coaching Challenges and Solutions 1 of 9 What if a coaching client is resistant?

Sometimes a coach is asked to coach an employee that was not told or was not told well.  When they find out that they “must” get coached, they naturally resist the idea.  As a coach, how you manage the initial conversation with that individual will impact their engagement.

As a coach, prepare yourself with the foundational information.  Then when you meet with the employee the first time, after asking the first question listed below, provide the information.

Foundational Information:

  • Definitions of coach, client, sponsor, coaching, coaching relationship as given in the ICF Code of Ethics because this provides the coaching client with an awareness that instead of their company being your client they are themselves the client.
  • Code of Ethics: confidentiality and record keeping because for a client to know the level of confidentiality and how records are managed provides reassurance that they can talk with you openly.
  • Research on the ROI of coaching provides information that lets the client know coaching is both a benefit and an opportunity.


  1. What is your understanding of coaching?
  2. Given that you have the opportunity for coaching, how do you want to use it?
  3. If you are in a coaching relationship, what do you want from it?
  4. If there are benefits from coaching for you, what do you want?

What is important in the conversation is accepting the employee where they are at and accepting their thoughts.  Be respectful and provide the information so they choose whether to engage in a coaching relationship – be patient and give them time.

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