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Communication in Coaching

Communication in Coaching

Communication is an exchange of thoughts and plans through listening, questioning, and clear, direct language.  With rapport, communication is more open, honest, and deep. This empowers the client to use the coach as a sounding board, really explore options, and choose their plan of action. Communication in Coaching

About Communication:

  • The first skill of communication is listening; coach training includes moving past biographical listening or listening to respond so coaches learn active listening, rephrasing, and reflecting.
  • Clear, direct communication is assertive. Assertiveness is a skill only five percent of U.S. citizens have fully developed and use consistently.
  • Coaching questions are unique and powerful.
  • Quality training programs provide insight and tools for coaches to develop effective listening skills, assertive language, and powerful questioning techniques.
  • Communication Skills

Communication is Important Because:

  • The service of a coach is based on effective communication.
  • A top reason for hiring a coach is to have a “sounding board.”
  • Effective communication creates the opportunity to talk through goals, ideas, and strategies, and to analyze outcomes.
  • Communication skills are 3 of the ICF’s 11 core competencies of coaches.

Communication Considerations:

  • Listening, assertiveness, and questioning are learned skills.
  • The choice of words influences focus and outcomes.
  • The skill of the coach serves client skill development.


  • Ensure coach training includes listening, assertiveness, questioning, and learning styles.
  • Consistently practice with intention to continue developing and building communication skills.
  • Use the 3 coaching communication competencies at all times in coaching sessions.

The communication competencies of listening, powerful questioning, and clear, direct communication are the most obvious of the skills to clients in coaching and effective application is essential in each coaching session.


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