In much of the corporate and business world, coaching is still widely misunderstood. Some think of sports coaching where the coach is telling the athletes what to do and often yelling at them with the idea of driving them forward. Executive or Business Coaching is completely different.
In the workplace, whether corporate, business, nonprofit, or government, the terms coaching and mentoring are often used interchangeably. Again, the two are completely different.
The International Coaching Federation, ICF, definition is, “a strategic partnership in which the coach empowers the client to clarify goals, create action plans, move past obstacles, and achieve what the client chooses.”
To dig deeper into what this definition means, consider the ICF testing process for credentialing as a coach. The ICF publishes a table that explains how coaching competencies are evaluated giving reasons credentialing is denied. Here is one thing it says: “For example, if a coach almost exclusively gives advice or indicates that a particular answer chosen by the coach is what the client should do, trust and intimacy, coaching presence, powerful questioning, creating awareness, and client generated actions and accountability will not be present and a credential at any level would be denied.”
Bottom line, if someone is telling, directing, or advising then they are NOT coaching.
How do you explain coaching?