Detour Coaching Agenda
The morning after I had a coaching call, the client called and wanted to talk about something that was bothering him. He said that two weeks ago I had asked him a powerful question about an aspect of his life calling which opened up a perspective for him which was so helpful. During the call the day before, I made a statement about another area of his life to provide a similar perspective expanding conversation.
The response was cold. We continued on with the original direction he wanted to discuss.
I had broken one of the fundamental principles of coaching: Don't direct the client but let them set the focus and direction. At the time I was not trying to direct the client but maybe subtly I wanted that same positive response which I got from two weeks ago.
So I get a phone call from the client and he asked me some hard questions.
"Was that area you brought up on my coaching prep form?", "No" I replied.
"Did I say I wanted to talk about that area as we were discussing the objective for the call?", "No" I replied.
"Why did you bring that area up?"
... silence... conviction.... what do I say? .... wow, I'm so glad this guy is being honest with me... good but hard lesson.
I asked the client if he would forgive me for bringing up an area he did to want to discuss. He graciously forgave me and said he wanted to continue on with the coaching relationship. This experience has marked me as a coach.
The client sets the direction and focus in the initial coaching inquiry call, the prep form and the objective clarification at the beginning of the call. I have experienced what it means to simply help the client get from point A to point B and not taking them where they don't want to do.
I will forever be grateful for the hard but helpful feedback!