A Powerful Map for Effective Coaching – The E-Scale Process

Effective Coaching

What is your definition of effective coaching?

Many coaches I have spoken to or read about have defined effective coaching by using words such as support, challenge, develop, change, facilitate, collaborate, inspire etc. Despite these overlaps in how coaches describe what they are aiming to do, there are a multitude of approaches, frameworks, techniques and ethical viewpoints that promise to make you an effective coach.

There are many coaching maps for navigating the journey of change.

This variety is likely the consequence of the coaching profession’s rapid expansion over the past 15-20 years. It is also, I believe, one of the strengths of the industry. A “wide stream” of perspectives and approaches keeps coaching relevant and responsive to the ever-shifting landscape of human development. At the same time this vast variety makes it difficult to choose the “best practice” coaching map of for you and for your clients.

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So, what criteria would you use to evaluate the effectiveness of a coaching approach/technique?

I’ve been thinking about this and propose the following brief criteria. You may want to add others, but I believe an effective coaching map or framework will:

  • Adapt to the personal styles and needs of diverse individuals and client groups
  • Build on well-researched coaching strategies and psychological theory
  • Give coaches clear and simple coaching guidelines for effective practice
  • Provide a dynamic model of human development for stimulating deeper levels of change
  • Leave space for the coach’s personal style, training and previous experience to be integrated into the proposed framework

To satisfy the above criteria (and there are other criteria of course) most coaches have been rather eclectic. We have drawn from a variety of models and techniques such as solution-focused techniques, NLP, cognitive behavioural strategies and many others to create a comprehensive and effective coaching “toolbox”. We have combined these techniques with various forms of assessment to give us a quicker “handle” on our clients’ key strengths and areas of development. We have tried our best to develop an integrated and effective coaching map through experimentation and years of experience and learning.

Where are you in your development as an effective coach?

Have you established an integrated map of techniques, strategies and theory that accommodates your own natural style, values and being? Are you a coach looking for something else to shift you into a new level of effectiveness and enjoyment of your work?

In either case please read on. I’d like to share my experience with you of a powerful and effective coaching map that I believe meets the above criteria, and can add value to both experienced/established coaches and coaches in search of an integrating coaching framework.

Confessions of a Coach

Ok, so this is not really a confession. I just liked the heading. What I really want to share with you is my experience of using the E-Scale profiling and coaching technology.

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Firstly, some context.

I am a coach, like you. However, I originally trained as a clinical psychologist and therapist where I was exposed to a number of theories and understandings of how and why individuals experience psychological and emotional difficulties, and how change can be encouraged.  I have been trained in a number of ‘therapeutic models’ such as transactional analysis, cognitive behaviour therapy, systemic family therapy, psychodynamic approaches, and solution-focused therapy. These models have greatly informed my development as a coach, but also the development of the coaching profession. Although as coaches we are less focused on “psychopathology and dysfunction” and more focused enhancing functioning and performance, we build on the theories and principles of ‘traditional’ psychology.

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