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10 Questions To Test Whether Your Coach Is A Fake by Jon Bartlett

This week is ICF’s International Coaching Week and it’s a great opportunity to celebrate & discuss coaching. Each weekday I’m hosting blogs from a variety of authors exploring an aspect of coaching. You can read all the posts this week here & follow them on Twitter using #coachingblogs.

The topic for today is “10 questions to test whether your coach is a fake” which has been suggested by Neil Morrison (@neilmorrison).

This post has been written by Jon Bartlett (@projectlibero) – I hope you enjoy it!

10 Questions To Test Whether Your Coach Is A Fake

When I first saw the brief for today’s post I thought I would avoid it and contribute on one of the other days. I know what I bring to coaching and have a fairly clear picture of what I’m there to do. However I guess that as a “profession” (lets not start that debate here) we obviously haven’t done a good enough job of highlighting the value and benefits that a good coaching relationship can bring. However, I figured that others would approach the subject of qualifications and ethics far more ably than I could so in it’s place I bring something a little different. Let’s assume that a commissioner of coaching hasn’t come across someone who holds the same level of professionalism I aspire to – how would I be able work that out? I offer you

“10 ways to spot that your commissioner doesn’t really buy in to coaching”

    1. They grumble and moan about having to get external coaches / consultants in to assist on the basis that “you have no idea about this industry”
    2. They talk loudly about their “talent acquisition programme” and how it is “identifying tomorrow’s leaders today”
    3. They say that the coaching is completely confidential, then ask for written reports of each session
    4. They say that the coaching is about whatever the coachee needs to explore, and then hand you the coachees appraisal from last year where they have highlighted what they want “fixed”.
    5. They worry about whether HR should have a seat on the board
    6. They balk at your competitive quote, saying “That’s money for old rope, I could do it far more cheaply”
    7. They wonder why it can’t just be like the good old days where you went for a quiet pint and sorted it all out man to man.
    8. They want to see a qualification but then never ask about ethics and supervision because “all coaches are the same aren’t they?”
    9. The coachee knows nothing about being referred for coaching.
    10. The commissioner asks if you’ve got any jobs going “because I did a coaching module on my CIPD”.

So there you have it, a tongue in cheek guide to how it feels from the other side of the desk.

Jon Bartlett (@projectlibero)

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