I was sharing breakfast with someone recently who is far more deeply involved in the corporate coaching world than I have been.
She asked me to describe what I do with coaching. While blabbing about the evolution of my clarity therapy approach, I called it, in essence, an “Epiphany Model” of coaching – I reach a deep level of insight with clients based on an intensive upfront session. Then we chart a new course based on the professional themes, strengths and aspirations that emerge.
Graphically, I’ll represent the epiphany model like this:
- Initial discovery is a 30-60 minute phone/Skype conversation to see if there is compatibility, openness, motivation to change, and perceived ability to provide guidance (2 individuals are not always a “match”).
- Clarity Therapy is a 3-4 hour intensive one-on-one session to surface personal/professional DNA and brainstorm fresh direction (in my case, with individuals, I’m focusing on career direction).
- Ongoing Coaching takes shape flexibly according to the need for further input and direction.
This method works for me – my goal is to get to the essence (the inner core, or wiring) of the person right away, and then suggest (re-)direction from that base of insight.
But apparently, this approach is unusual (??). I guess something like what I’ve depicted below is the more standard way of engaging in a coaching relationship (true??):
The above approach starts with a smaller base of in-depth knowledge, and then uncovers more over time through a systematic set of short meetings (60-90 minute appointments).
Now, I can see how that incremental approach might fit more naturally in a more corporate setting, and also in a coaching relationship that is primarily “goal & accountability” focused. How effective is it? Would some sort of epiphany front-end improve it? What do you think?
The conversation really piqued my curiosity – what different coaching approaches/models ARE out there? What have you found success with? Is there any one “better” approach; or, like ice cream, just a bunch of different flavors? I’m trying to figure this coaching stuff out as I go along, so maybe we can have some creative and thoughtful discussion about methods we’ve seen (or put) in operation.
Related blog post: Clarity Leads to Confidence
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