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Coaching, with a professional coach, is the practice of supporting an individual, referred to as a coachee, through the process of achieving a specific personal or professional result. The term 'client' may be used in life-coaching but in commercial settings the term 'client' is used to describe the organization that 'pays' and not the person receiving coaching.

Description of coaching process The structure and methodologies of coaching are very numerous with one unifying feature, coaching approaches are predominantly facilitating in style, see facilitation; that is to say that the coach is mainly asking questions and challenging the coachee. Coaching is differentiated from therapeutic and counselling disciplines.

There are a variety of approaches within the coaching methodology.

Coaching is performed with individuals and groups, in person, over the phone and online.

The facilititive approach to coaching in sport was pioneered by Timothy Gallwey, hithertoo, sports coaching was (and often remains solely a skills-based learning experience from a master in the sport). Other contexts for coaching are numerous and include executive coaching, life-coaching, emotional intelligence coaching and wealth coaching.

Today, coaching is widespread. For example, Newcastle College registered 15,000 students on its Performance Coaching Diploma Course from launch and within its first four years. The UK's Chartered Institute of Personnel Management reports Taking the Temperature of Coaching, 2009. that 51% of companies (sample of 500) 'consider coaching as a key part of learning development' and 'crucial to their strategy', with 90% reporting that they 'use coaching'. The basic skills of coaching are often being developed in managers within organizations specifically to upskill their managing and leadership abilities, rather than to apply in formal one-to-one coaching sessions. These skills can also be applied within team meetings and are akin then to the more traditional skills of group facilitation.

Certification and Accreditation In the United States, there is no official accreditation for professional coaches. Certification can be obtained through a privately owned organization.

According to coach credentialing expert, Dr. Rey Carr, in European countries "accreditation" can mean either organizations or individuals.

Instructing, coaching and mentoring differ. Instructors disseminate knowledge. Coaches help coachees to build skills. Mentors shape mental attitudes. Alternately, instructors train to immediate tasks, coaches accompany achievements, and mentors provide whole-life shaping.

There are many definitions of coaching, mentoring and various styles of line management and training. Greif defines coaching 'It aims at improving the attainment of self-congruent goals or cconscious self-change and self-development'. McLeod defines coaching as 'the use of silence, questions and chellenge to assist a coachee towards a defined target. These are often present issues or ones that relate to the future'.

The 5 Features of Successful Coaching Joint Planning:
A joint plan is an agreement-either written or verbal-between the coach and coachee. This plan should include the specific actions the coachee will take between coaching sessions to develop important new skills or knowledge. Joint planning isn't just "homework" assigned by the coach—rather, it allows the coachee to take an active role in deciding what skills and strategies to focus on.

Observation is when one person carefully watches another person's actions with the goal of evaluating existing skills and generating new ideas and strategies. This can refer to the coach observing the coachee as they practice a skill or strategy, or the coachee observing the coach as they model a specific skill.

Action/Practice opportunities allow the coachee to try out new strategies and refine them over time. Opportunities for action usually take place between coaching sessions, and allow the coachee to work on skills and strategies they’ve learned from the coach. Action items are added to the joint plan at the end of one coaching session and reviewed at the beginning of the next. Practice occurs in the presence of the coach, who models a strategy for the coachee (if necessary) and then observes the coachee using the technique. Afterward, they reflect together on what worked, what didn't work, and why.

Reflection is an essential part of the coaching process and naturally follows a period of observation or action/practice. These discussions allow the coach and coachee to analyze existing strategies together and refine them if they're not achieving the desired outcome. Asking open-ended reflective questions is an essential component of this step.

Feedback is critical information the coach supplies the coachee, based on the coach's direct observations or on reflections shared by the coachee. Effective coaching primarily uses two types of feedback: informative (sharing knowledge and information with the coachee) and affirmative (offering noncommittal perceptions and acknowledgments that are free of judgment).

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