Information Included in Coaching Notes
By Cathy Liska
During coach training when practicing a coaching session, it quickly becomes clear that to write everything that is said, plus include observations, while ensuring the conversation continues to flow, requires writing or typing at an incredible speed. This then invites the question: What is included in the notes? If the coach is writing their interpretation or thoughts, then they are moving out of coaching into more of a consulting or mental health professional role. Typically, coaching notes include the client’s key phrases, or are taken in a bullet point or outline format.
Because coaching is focused on the future, instead of investing time in the past or even the present, there is enough past or present information for context and understanding. The coaching session is about what is wanted and how to move forward. The language used in coaching is both positive and proactive. The notes for the coaching session follow the same parameters.
For example, if a client talks about what they do NOT want, the coach asks them what they DO want instead. This is the answer that is included in the notes.
This means coaching notes are ideally organized by question or subject, key points only, and future-focused. Coaching notes are primarily positive and proactive. The Certified Professional Coach training program offered through the Center for Coaching Certification coveres note taking as part of their curriculum.