Having found out a little about coaching through The Coaching Academy, as well as how neuro-linguistic programming can be used within coaching, through Toby and Kate McCartney, I was keen to discover what training provider Animas has to offer. I attended my final, free coaching introductory course in London last month. This last course followed a transformational coaching approach, which is the main approach taught by Animas on its diploma. There are numerous different styles of coaching, however they are often broadly categorised into three main approaches: Performance, developmental and transformational.
Performance coaching tends to be a focused, target driven approach where the coach supports the client in reaching specific, agreed outcomes. Developmental coaching is somewhat broader than performance, with the coach encouraging the client to identify what they have learnt through their sessions and the changes that have taken place (how is that person growing/developing?) The third key approach is transformational coaching. This is more holistic in its approach than the other two, involving the coach working with the client to understand and explore what the client’s fundamental views are, what drives them, what attitudes and beliefs they hold and how these shape that clients’ experiences. It is said to be a deeper type of coaching, but will still have some direction in mind.
The introductory coaching day run by Animas included content relating to the history of coaching and how the profession has changed and developed over the past few decades. The speaker (Founder and CEO, Nick Bolton) talked about the progression of our society from the agricultural period, then onto the industrial period and following this, the information period, which we are currently in – and how he believes we are now approaching an emotional intelligence period. He shared his prediction that careers like coaching will only become more prominent, as technology continues to replace humans performing physical jobs – and with the increasing life pressures on all of us, the need for more focus on soft skills and mental support for people will be invaluable.
The Animas definition of coaching was given as ‘A collaborative, non-directive conversation that brings about positive change both inside and out through inquiry, reflection, choice and new behaviour.’ I find this interesting as it is the first definition I have come across which emphasises the need for a client to make behavioural changes/adjustments, which is obviously fundamental to a client’s success.
I will collate everything I have learnt so far about what coaching is and how it can be defined, and will post a mind map on my blog for anyone interested in understanding more about it.