Feb 14
The What, How & Who of Coaching

The What, How & Who of Coaching

Hi. It’s Stacey Ashley here from @Ashley Coaching. Today, I want to talk to you about the four levels of coaching.

In the last week, I’ve been asked a couple of times about coaching, what it is and what kind should I be doing? These are by my senior clients who are thinking about moving from a corporate career into a coaching career.

What I wanted to share with you today is the four levels of coaching, so you can get a better sense of, if you’re already coaching, what you’re doing and how to move to the next level, and if you’re thinking about coaching, where you want to be aiming.

I really should acknowledge the wonderful Marvin Oka for introducing these concepts to me.

The first level of coaching is Performance Coaching. Most often you would associate this with sports coaching, where the coach has some degree of technical knowledge that they bring to the conversation and then the coachee chooses what to do with it. It’s often task oriented and it’s about ‘what’, what are you doing to do and what are you going to achieve?

If we look at a commercial context, you would find this in quality coaching, in call centre coaching, that sort of thing.

As we move to the next level of coaching, the second level, this is Process Coaching. This is about the ‘how’. How do you go about doing something? A good example of this would be life coaching or again in a commercial or corporate context, it would be something like how do you achieve time management goals or work-life balance for example?

Then we move to level three, and this is where we start to coach, not the what and not the how, but the ‘who’. This is most often where we see executive coaching coming in. This is inner game coaching.

We’ve moved from performance to process to inner game, from what, to how, to who. Who are you when you show up? Who do you want to be? Who do you aspire to be in order to achieve the things that are important to you?

Then the fourth level is actually a combination of all of those things.

Now what’s important for a coach is that you need to recognise, firstly, what level are you aiming to coach at, what process or what level of coaching? Then the second thing is what level of skill do you need to be able to do great coaching at that level?

The What, How & Who of Coaching Diagram

As we progress through the what, the how, the who. From performance, to process, to inner game to hybrid, your skill level needs to progress as well. That will help you to identify where your skill gaps are, how you need to develop your coaching toolkit and your coaching self, your coaching ‘who’ so that you can become the best coach that you can possibly be for the people that you are working with. Whether it’s inside an organisation or whether you have your own business.

This is Stacey Ashley. I hope that’s been really useful for you. I’d love to know what level you’re coaching at now, and leave a comment below.

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About The Author

Stacey Ashley works with Leaders building high performing teams, Leaders who coach and Professional coaches to develop their coaching skills, and create the confidence and courage to make a difference in their own way. She is a champion of workplace coaching culture and a regular speaker on happiness at work, complete leadership and mBraining. e | info@ashleyconsulting.com.au p | 02 8006 1733