Coaching focuses on people learning rather than us teaching them. The Holy Spirit teaches and reminds (John 14:21). Coaches actively listen and ask reflective questions, supportively challenge limited beliefs and behaviors—all in order to assist people to hear from God and respond to Him.
This practice of coaching in leadership development is actually a throwback to the historic roots of word “coach,” which is the Kocs wagon of 15th-century Hungary. A coach figuratively “carries” a person to his or her desired destination through ongoing conversations, thought-provoking questions and support.
· A coach focuses on the agenda of the coachee. The coachee decides which goals or problems to work on, not the coach.
· A coach uses powerful questions to generate new learning. The coach does not teach or advise, but rather asks questions and listens.
· A coach encourages action. The coachee develops his or her own action steps, not the coach.
· A coach supports change. A coach follows-up to support personal learning, growth and change, rather than demanding change.
Those who are coached (coachees) are in the driver’s seat. They choose their own growth goals, reflect deeply on their current situation, think through their options and decide their next steps.
Coaching may sound great, but you may be wondering how this fits with teaching. After all, didn’t Jesus tell people what to do and how to believe? Aren’t the Ten Commandments rather clear in telling us what God’s expectations are of us in terms of lifestyle? Developing leaders requires that we teach and train others, does it not?
Yes, yes and yes!