Establishing the coaching agreement includes both an initial agreement for the coaching relationship and an agreement at the beginning of each session as to what the client wants to work on in that time.
The initial agreement starts with a conversation on the roles of the coach and the client, what coaching is — and often what it is not. Then a written agreement that details this information and generally addresses ethics and confidentiality is signed by the coach and the client.
At the beginning of each session, it is the responsibility of the coach to ask the client what they want to focus on and achieve in that session. At the ACC credentialing level, this is adequate. At the PCC level this requirement is augmented with the requirement for the coach asking how the client measures success for the topic. B
At all three levels of credentialing, if the coach chooses the topic then they will not pass the exam. In coach training at the Center for Coaching Certification, practicing coaching includes asking the client how they will measure success and the process taught includes asking what they want to focus on during the coaching time. Additionally, in further practice the coach expands their skills and is checking in with the client to ensure they are experiencing the value they want from the coaching.