people looking at plans

Are you coaching or leading?

How many opportunities are wasted with conversations that don’t take a coaching approach?

I recently attended my son’s Year 10 Career Session. The process itself was really good – three separate diagnostic tools to understand personality, competency and interests, followed by a 30 minute face to face meeting between the two of us and a career expert. It was very useful in terms of getting my son to connect the work he needs to do in school now with his future work life, and it was also helpful in terms of starting to think about his Year 11 subject selection.

As we stood waiting for the lift afterwards, I asked him how he had found it.

“It was good… though I felt a bit cut off…” he said.

“In what way?” I asked.

“Well, whenever I wanted to talk about something, I felt like I was led down a different path.”

And there lies the difference between coaching and not coaching. There were no open questions and no real curiosity, and to be fair, it would have been hard in the short time allocated.

Fortunately (or unfortunately?!) for my son, his mother and father are coaches and so we’ve planned a follow up coaching session.

How often are we missing great coaching opportunities, whether we are a leader, a parent, a teacher, a peer, or anyone, in fact? I’d wager there are many opportunities in most of our days to really listen to someone and create space for true reflection followed by considered action.

By Jill Livesey

Jill has been an Executive Coach since 2006 in a variety of industries. She also specialises in career coaching, for people looking to re-align their role, gain a promotion, or take an entirely new career path.
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