Your pre coaching conversation with your potential client forms the foundation for your future coaching relationship. It is not about hard ‘selling’ your services instead about establishing whether this person really is ready for coaching and whether you are the right person to help them. For me there are 4 keys aims of this initial conversation:
It is about understanding more about them as a person - broadly speaking where they have come from, where they are now and where they want to go. It is about establishing their needs, wants, strengths, capabilities, resources, fears, motivations, challenges and barriers to moving forward.
It is also about establishing what specifically what they want to achieve from coaching – aspirations, desires and goals and how they believe coaching will help them. A potential coachee should be an ‘agent for change’ ready to embrace coaching as a process for helping them to raise their self-awareness and make personal change. There is no point in starting a coaching relationship if the coachee isn’t ready to move forward and you may establish early on that, although they may need help, coaching isn’t what they need right now.
From my own experience it is important to have this pre coaching conversation with an open mind – yes hopefully you will be able to help them, but you also need to be open to the fact that you might not be the best person coach them in this instance. So avoid going in with your ‘selling hat’ on instead really listen and tune into what they want. If your instinct tells you that you that you will not be the best coach you can be to this person then don’t be afraid to direct them to someone who can serve them better.
Your reputation as an excellent coach will only be built if you help those you are best able to help and if you offer your services to who won’t fully benefit your own reputation will be damaged.
It is also an opportunity to start to build and test the rapport you have with your potential coachee – great rapport lies at the heart of any effective coaching relationship and this process starts from the moment you communicate with them. If this isn’t established easily at the outset then it is probably an indicator that you won’t enjoy a productive and comfortable relationship moving forward.
Coaching Programme Design
First Coaching Session
Intake Session Checklist
Reasons To End Your Coaching Relationship
Ending Your Coaching Relationship
Post Coaching Relationship
Professional Coaching Practice