Coaching Client in Conflict with Their New Boss

A coaching client had a dilemma. They loved their job and had been with the company for years. They loved their community and had kids in school. A new boss was hired. The coachee had no idea what caused the problem, they just knew they were not getting along with the new boss.

Have you ever listened to someone talk about a problem, and have ideas for how to fix it? Do they want your ideas? Will they follow through? Of course most of us have ideas, and we have learned that rarely does the other person use our idea even if they say they like it.

Through the asking of questions, the coachee began considering the differences in work style, communication style, and planning between themselves and their boss. This led to the coachee seeking to understand why the differences were so extreme. The coachee was completely stuck, so providing perspective by giving examples of similar situations and information on personality styles sparked ideas. Through questions, the coachee explored possibilities for moving forward. The coachee developed a number of options and created a plan of action.

Because the coaching client figured out their answer and their plan, they naturally followed through.

What a great conversation when the coachee shared the impact of focusing on how to approach their boss! Now the client has a process for communicating with their boss in a way that works, and the career is back on track.

Often the most brilliant conversationalist is the one who says the least; often the most empowering conversation is the one with lots of open questions.

Key insights:

* Rather than giving the solution, give perspective. (This happens by providing multiple examples, and then having them brainstorm their own ideas.)

* Ask open questions so the coachee creates solutions – they will own their own answer and follow through.
* Empower the coachee to determine specific action steps and the timeline for accomplishing each task.

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