I've been a professional executive coach since 1997 and a trainer of executive coaches in my own unique G2S (Global to Specific) coaching system since 1999. At this stage I've trained hundreds of people as coaches within organisations.
I don't use GROW or T-GROW or variations of any such models, as I find them far to general. I like specific, practical results - and having been an engineer, I like systems that guarantee a measured outcome for clients who come to me for results. I also like to ensure that the coaches I train are not just good - but excellent.
That requires a unique system and as my coaching 'graduates' would say, my most used phrase is 'work the system - the system works!' Not that its restrictive in any way - more a proven path along which a client can be led to discover and accomplish her or her own specific objectives within a shortened time frame.
The training is intensive - I set a high standard and it requires commitment to complete - and I do fail people that don't make the grade. One of the most nerve wracking elements of the training (I am told !!) is the final assessment of a practical skills session where I sit in to review process and fluency.
The purpose of all this? Well just to tell a little story of the value of preparation. I recently assessed a candidate in their final assesment. I had reviewed their written work and was fully expecting that I was going to fail them on the practice side of things. Instead, I was greeted with a practically flawless demonstration of how a first session should be handled by a coach.
When I had expressed my pleasure at the result and my initial concern, they said that they had rehearsed the session several times over the last few days - late the night before and again that morning before the session itself. They were a real example of how practice pays and they received the right result. Here's what they emailed to me later:
'My expectations from the course were well and truly met in that I am now qualified in the use of an internationally recognised, highly credible, practical coaching system which will help to build my competence in this very important area of people management and leadership development.
I found all parts of the programme interesting and engaging and I also found the "graduation" requirements to be appropriately challenging without, on the one hand, being overly academic or on the other, being too simplistic or irrelevant.
In particular I found the gradual increase in effort needed to progress through the qualification from classroom discussion to role plays and finally evidence of client work and of course the final observed session with yourself to be very effective in preparing me for going live with clients of my own in the organisation.
The system, and your instruction and training techniques, are very well designed and have provided an excellent base to build on for future coaching practice. It has provided me with a significantly increased level of confidence when engaging with clients and I now feel I can bring real value and support to clients in coaching interventions which, up to now, were based on what could best be described as unstructured and unfocussed conversations.
Many thanks again and best regards for now.'