The relationship between coach and coachee is the beginning point for coaching and its foundation. You create a system for possibility through the relationship and rapport you create together – the alchemy of coaching. David Drake in Narrative Coaching talks of story being changed by a third space. This is the space created between a coach and coachee where something new can be created. It is an exciting time at the start of the coaching process where you get to know each other. It is exactly the same whether this is coaching people face to face or virtually. You need to show warmth and openness to attract coachees into the process.
“When one is in a state of rapport with another person, or with a group, it is an experience that can be considered as ‘being in tune’ with the other(s)”.
(Dilts and DeLozier 2000)
This mutual acceptance and respect builds the trust, gradually. This happens as the coachee sees that you, the coach, can be counted on and are sensitive to how they describe themselves and their situation. This could be called the combination of cognitive trust (coming from the head of the coachee) and affective trust (from the heart and more at a personal level). Coaching is not an analytical tool. Coaches help individuals to incorporate their whole selves, including emotional lives into their work to achieve high performance. The very act of sharing the story out loud with someone who is listening with complete attention is a powerful opportunity for personal growth.
Coaching is about results and intention…
It works on the premise that coachees are capable and resourceful and responsible for making relevant changes in their lives. As a coach, it is your role to notice and reinforce signs of change and to highlight inconsistency in what you hear or see, and challenge where actions or behaviors are not creating the results the coachee wants and needs to achieve.
The concept of rapport is a social process that opens up channels for dialogue both internal and external to one’s self – for both the coach and the coachee. A useful document to show how this works in coaching is David Clutterbuck’s ‘Seven Coaching Conversations’ (PDF).
Very often in your coaching relationship you are encouraging and helping coachees to find the courage in themselves to make significant change and to take the risks they need to. We have seen this in the people we have worked with. Exciting changes have happened for individuals and their organisations. This website will capture some of those stories of impact and build evidence for the power of coaching.