Accesses knowledge and awareness from inside the system through process mastery. The goals are defined by the person or group and it will be driven by a desire for change.
Brings awareness and knowledge into the system from the outside through content mastery. The goal is skill acquisition defined by a need.
The above diagrams are a succinct way to describe the essential difference I perceive between coaching and training. This being said, requests from companies are very often a mixture of: “tell us how to do it” and “coach us to do it better”. One is not better than the other but I have a firm belief that, when someone discovers within himself a positive practice in management and can then confirm that practice through interaction with others, he grows as a human being. Coaching fosters this type of maturing which in turn increases the person’s capacity to manage others from a space of wisdom.
Up until around 2006, I was designing and delivering made to measure training programs albeit with a significant coaching component included. However, since 2007 my company clients have tended to be HR specialists, communication directors or senior managers with quite specific requests ranging from facilitating off site team events or major international meetings to facilitating regular team meetings with a view to improving team practices.
My job is to work as closely as possible with my client, and that must include the most senior stakeholder, to clarify the desired outcome of the “event”. With that clarity in mind my task is to build a process that will take my client and his people towards that outcome. It is also my job to warn my client that no process is foolproof and that we must be ready to “dance in the moment” in order to take the learning from whatever arises. Not many of the captains of industry have this mind set and most of them are adverse to risk management so another one of my tasks is to create a safe framework for us all to operate within.
Please read the “Corporate Coaching” page to get an idea of the types of assignments I have been engaged in. I have chosen them as examples of work that proved to be, not only highly successful for my client, but were also a source of personal pleasure and achievement.