Saturday, June 24, 2006

Conversation Re Coaching

One of my colleagues and I talked about coaching last week. The meeting came about as a result of my sharing the Neuroscience of Leadership article. This particular colleague has studied coaching with David Rock, one of the coauthors of the article.

It turns out that Rock advocates a coaching model based on brain science and centered on 'thinking questions.' My colleague and I briefly compared notes on the coaching model that I learned with Richard Boyatzis, which revolves around personal vision and emotional intelligence. The difference between the emphasis in the styles got me to thinking about the Philosophical Orientation Questionnaire (POQ).

Is one model 'better than' another? Maybe a coaching style emphasizing 'thinking' would appeal and resonate more with someone whose philosophical orientation is Intellectual, while a coaching style emphasizing personal vision would resonate more with someone whose POQ is Humanistic. If so, which coaching model would appeal to someone whose POQ is Pragmatic? (I'm guessing most Pragmatics would regard coaching as unnecessary fluff and refuse to participate in it!)

I'm almost certain that Richard would defend his coaching model as the 'right' one, and Rock would probably defend his model in the same way. One is based on research into emotional intelligence, and the other is based on research in brain science. If the research in both is equally valid, how could we combine the models to create an even more effective model?

In any case, it's very frustrating to have all this theory and research and then to look around in the 'real world' of business and find so little of it being valued or applied. I've grown more and more interested in how to introduce change in a stealthy way.


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