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Coaching is client-centered. This means that the process is driven entirely by the what the client wishes to address.
The role of the coach is to give full attention to the client, be an advocate, help the client uncover and explore possibilities, offer feedback and resources, and encourage and hold the client accountable for whatever it is they are trying to achieve. Throughout the duration of the coaching relationship, the coach routinely checks in with the client to inquire about how the process is going, if the desired results are being achieved, and whether the approach needs to be adjusted to better meet the needs of the client.

We rely on several models of adult development in our coaching, including the Cycle of Renewal which was designed by Frederic Hudson, PhD. Additionally, we draw on the work of Gerard Egan, author of The Skilled Helper, and many other coaching thought leaders.

Our philosophy is that effective coaching helps create congruence
between an individual's inner self and outer life.

The process – what actually happens in a coaching session – is unique to each client. In general, coaching involves deep dialogue, considering critical questions, discovering and uncovering fresh ideas, identifying resources, challenging oneself, slowing down to consider all the options, thinking about old problems in new ways, and being accountable to follow through on action plans and commitments.

The work of coaching goes beyond just the time spent in sessions. Between each coaching session, a client is often working on assignments, reading resources offered by the coach, researching options, and doing introspective self-evaluation exercises. Engaging in activities such as this between sessions creates momentum that leads to better outcomes.

Some clients benefit from taking one or more assessments. We may use assessment tools such as the following when we find that it would effectively impact the coaching process:

  • Personal Directions Instrument: (from the Management Research Group)
  • CPI 260: (Leadership Effectiveness)
  • Bar-On EQI: (Emotional Intelligence)
  • Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator (Personality type)
  • Conflict Dynamics Profile: (Conflict resolution and leadership development)

Each client’s return on investment from coaching depends, in large part, on what they wish to achieve going into the process. Benefits may include:

Clarity around core values, purpose, and vision.
Increased self-awareness and self-confidence.
Identifying and honoring your unique skills, talents, strengths, and aptitudes.
Managing change and transition with greater ease.
Accountability to achieve specific goals.
Approaching your career with greater purpose and vigor.
Improved time management skills; better work/life balance.

Coaching requires commitment. Anyone who engages in the rigors of coaching should be ready to look objectively at their own patterns of both behavior and thinking, assess the big picture, stretch themselves, be open to new possibilities, and work to take themselves to the next level of authenticity, growth, and success. Most clients find this process to be exciting, invigorating, and empowering.

Clients must understand that coaching is not therapy. Coaching is not intended to explore a client’s psyche, attempt to heal longstanding wounds, or solve emotional problems. Additionally, the role of the coach is not to tell a client what to do and clients are expected to take action only on their own decisions and accept responsibility for the choices they make.

Coaches who are members of the International Coach Federation (ICF) adhere to ethical guidelines which include maintaining confidentiality, avoiding conflicts of interest, accurately representing the profession of coaching, being forthright in contracting and financial issues, to name a few. You can read the entire code of ethics on the ICF website.

Coaching may be conducted in person or by telephone, depending on the location and desires of the client. Frequency of the coaching sessions is determined by each client’s objectives, the amount of time they are willing to devote to the process, and their budget.

Now that you understand more about coaching and how it works, click here for a list of services available from the Ash Grove Group.

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