Jennie Marshall | 16 October 2013
Surely everyone is capable of being successful if they’re coached? The fact is, everyone isn’t.
This question and answer was something that I was discussing
recently with a group of delegates on a
workshop, who were going forward to coach members of
their team to perform better and wanted to know 'how to coach
someone who doesn't want to be coached.'
And this raised some thoughts in my own mind.
There are uncoachable people out there. Those who are uncoachable often think they have no performance issues and if there is one, believe everyone 'out there' is the cause. In these cases, coaching isn't a very good option to produce positive results. It's kind of like one spouse dragging another to marriage counselling in the hope that the counsellor can 'fix' the partner. (Ever see how well that works?). The sticking point here is a mind-set that doesn't allow someone to reflect on their own behaviour, a desire to change it, and their personal responsibility for the relationship. So, forcing someone into a coaching relationship isn't the best organisational solution for certain issues and individuals.
5 ways to spot coachable people
If you are considering coaching someone else or being coached, here are five attributes I've observed in people who successfully 'own' their part of the coaching process. You might want to use this as a quick diagnostic tool.
1. Committed to change. Individuals who don't think they're perfect, want to improve, exhibit responsibility for their lives, and are willing to step outside of their comfort zones are good candidates for a successful coaching relationship.
2. Open to information about themselves. Be willing and able to listen and hear developmental feedback without being defensive; then, synthesise their coach's suggestions with their own personal reflections on the issue.
3. Open about themselves. Willing to engage in topics that may be uncomfortable but are getting in the way of their professional development; talks about 'what's really going on' so the coach can have a complete and honest picture of the total situation.
4. Appreciate new perspectives. People who get excited about hearing someone else's take on a situation and figure out how to learn from it can really benefit from coaching.
5. Awareness about one's self and others. Coachable people already have at least a fair amount of awareness about themselves. Equally important, they use it to reflect on their behaviour and how it impacts other people in the range of situations that come their way.
You may have some others that you use to gauge coachability.
It's not always going to be 'one glove fits all, coaching cures everything.' It is however about thinking how you can coach in subtle way to those non-believers.
I'm not guaranteeing you'll crack those uncoachable souls, but you may start to make inroads in to their own beliefs about their performance.
QA Learning Expert: Leadership, Management and Business Skills