coaching blog - how clever you need to be with questioning
What do you do when a coachee is sitting in front of you with their view on the world where you may see a different view in the way they are talking. How do you question this? Should you drive the direction?
Questioning is key to a good coaching session; how do you guide and get the coachee to think in another way? What is an open question? How do you use good open questions to get the coachee to think, maybe change a paradigm? Questioning must be done, so it is not judgemental and not based on your assumptions.
It is always hard as a coach to stay away from driving down a road to a solution when coaching. Very hard to not judge and make assumptions. The key to coaching is to sit and watch the coachee. How they are talking, what you are noticing in them and yourself, then share this. This Feel uncomfortable at first if you are not used to this. It is about the coachee and not you as a coach so if you feel uncomfortable, get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable because it is the coachees session.
Using open questions and listening is key to a good coaching session. Using good questions like “how this makes you feel”, “I notice that when you say the word that you sat back in your seat”, and of course the basic open questions of what, why, when, where and how. Using a brilliant question technique helps guide someone to a different way of thinking or having a lightbulb moment to change in their life. Questioning is applied differently between coaching and training; you need to understand the differences to know when you cross the boundaries.
As a coach, it is wonderful to help anyone have a shift in the way that they think. A coachees inner world is very different from yours as a coach, be careful not to push yours.
Claire Moody is our head coach at Target Training, and you can read more about her here. She delivers training on all coaching and numerous training the trainer courses.