The tips from the previous blog post are applicable for everyone. The natural next level is adjusting to individual preferences. People think differently, which means words have different meanings. As a coach, understand your client’s preferences and adjust your questioning style to your client.
* Open to Possibility:
Sometimes people are reactive instead of proactive, and this influences how they are best served by a coach in setting and achieving goals. When clients are reactive, they hold themselves back because they wait for things to happen. As a coach, ask questions so the client considers “how to” rather than reasons they “can’t.” For example, if a client wants to take the next step in their career, if they wait for the boss to ask them what they want, then the client is not acting to advance in their career. As a coach, ask the client “What achievements are expected before a promotion?” “How does your boss decide to give a raise or promotion?” “What will you do now so that when there is an opportunity for promotion, you are the natural candidate?”
* Logic or Emotion
Some people focus on how they feel or how they think others feel, others focus on the logical steps. When asking a client questions, use words that work for the client based on their preferences, and create an action plan. Specifically, a logic-based thinker prefers to talk about tasks, and the emotion-based person prefers to talk about how it feels or how others feel. Include words that speak to their preference. For a client that thinks with emotion, “What steps do you feel will move you forward?” For a logical client, “What specific action steps will you take?” This is a simple difference, and it matters to your coaching client!
When coaching, are you using client preferences for seeing, hearing, and feeling?