When It Comes To Coaching, We Wrote The Book
Leadership Coaching For The Workplace
Written by Panoramic Feedback founders Esther Kohn-Bentley and Timothy Bentley, Leadership Coaching For The Workplace offers a complete step-by-step guide to the coaching relationship.
It is practical, inspiring, and thorough.
- How to develop leaders for this new age.
- The Deep Learning process for coaching that "sticks".
- Case examples and narrative dialogues.
- Assessment tools to improve outcome.
- How to use 360-degree feedback (from any provider) as a coaching tool.
- Sample forms: contracts, action plans, evaluations.
- Contact information for resources, training, and accreditation.
"Practical Wisdom"For those of us who coach it is a source of great practical wisdom. For those yet to be involved in the coaching experience, it offers the best of introductions.
BMO Institute for Learning
While the authors provide a number of chapters detailing step-by-step guidance for improved coaching interactions and concrete applications of coaching in the workplace, their chapters on how coaches can understand themselves with greater precision and clarity, and how coaches can become more alert to troubled coachees, are essential reading for all coaches.
Excerpt from Chapter 4:
The Deep Learning Process
The Deep Learning Process guides us into the fascinating territory of the human development process. It enables the coach to approach with confidence those situations which others might avoid as intractable. It helps unleash the potential of those who have accomplished much and are highly valued, but have stalled. And it provides reason to hope for those about whom most others have already given up hope.
The reason it is so effective is that it addresses not simply that aspect of the mind which we define as 'rational', but the mind in all its fullness. It attends to emotions and instinctive responses, to memories, beliefs, assumptions, values, and principles. It allows us to connect equally with that greater part of which we are not even conscious, the deep and powerful flow of the unconscious mind which sometimes sweeps us through our lives without our ever noticing it.
This is a process universally applicable. It encompasses not just techniques of human development (what to do, when, and how) but equally the more subtle motivations of personality (why we cling to archaic behavior, why we change). It enables the leadership coach to respond, with respect and effectiveness, to the complexity of human nature. Rather than simply resolving external problems located in the workplace, it helps people to change their lives.
Central to the Deep Learning Process is the conviction that human beings in their natural condition have an insatiable urge to grow and to learn. We are intensely curious about what we can accomplish, and we have more power to develop than many think.
In some people that may be less obvious, usually because traumatic events have hidden or frustrated this drive. Think, for instance, of the person who was told repeatedly as a child that she or she would never learn, or who is struggling for emotional survival within a poisonous work environment. Without the stimulation offered by outside help, such people may never realize that they have an innate capacity to exceed the limitations of personal history and circumstance.
They may not recognize that they can harness their essential genetic programming to keep on developing. For even when it has been clouded by cruel circumstances, the ability to grow remains a foundational aspect of our humanity. The Deep Learning Process enables leadership coaches to be ever hopeful and effective, because it addresses and harnesses the fundamental qualities of those with whom we work.
The colorful truth about human beings is that we bring much more to any new learning situation than the demands of the job. Within ourselves we carry individual intelligence, unique memory-driven behaviors, and a complex of emotions. Frequently these factors tug us in opposing directions, making the process of learning complicated, increasing the possibility of failure and a backward slide into familiar routines.
Our natural human condition is a mix of motivation and apprehension, enthusiasm and complacency, confidence and diffidence, energy and resistance, vision and fear, future-oriented thinking burdened with past memories. The Deep Learning approach reminds coaches to keep our eyes wide open to the complex reality of human nature and behavior.
Because the Process provides an in-depth framework for the coach's work, the coachee is guided more deeply into reflection and is supported in exploring underlying hindrances to successful performance.
The Deep Learning Process is powerful because coachees learn how to learn. As a result, the likelihood of their retaining accomplishments is greatly increased. Gradually the patterns that lead to success become habitual, even in cases where they did not initially expect to make deep personal changes.
Deep Learning not only addresses human ambiguity, but brings additional benefits. Learning about learning is high on the list. The coachee comes to understand how she learns best, how to manage her learning, how to reinforce her changes.
That means that the learning is transferable. The next time the meeting-challenged person runs into relationship problems in the workplace—whether meeting-related or not—she is likely to apply what she learned through the coaching experience. Not only that, but she may apply it in the family or the community, and the more she grows in those areas, the more her workplace performance will improve.
Learning in this way demonstrates substantial career benefits, as it helps the person become a better manager with better individual relationships, better team relationships, a better bottom line, and better promotability.
And because the person gains in both self-awareness and an understanding of her effect on others, the learning is not here today, gone tomorrow. It will last and continue to affect her work and relationships throughout her career.
Characteristics of Deep Learning
- Not a goal we reach but a path we follow.
- Based on professional and ethical principles.
- Addresses the problem of retention of learning.
- Builds on an understanding of the human mind.
- Requires us to assess the individual qualities of the coachee.
- Is willing to engage at the level of personal issues.
- Sees beyond the conscious mind.
- Is powered by love.
- Requires the coach's commitment to personal growth.