Coaching and Blogging; could this be a match made in Business Heaven? They surely seem to be siblings growing up together in the same household.
Greg Balanko-Dickson did a posting at Joyful Jubilant Learning yesterday that got me thinking: Coaching could very well be an industry that will owe many of its growing points to the emergence of blogging, a little sister reaping the benefits of tagging along in big brother’s footsteps.
It would actually be the other way around I suppose, with an older sister not getting her big break until little brother and his generation broke through a glass ceiling for her, for coaching is a much older industry. When I first started as a coach, the industry was nowhere near the degree of credibility and respect it enjoys today, and I am certain that blogging is one of the catalysts that has helped this happen.
Greg’s article is called Coaching, Manipulation, or Collaborative Learning? and it’s a great case-study of how a coach works with a client. It’s also a good read whether you consider yourself coach, manager, or executive, for Greg wrote it specifically for Joyful Jubilant Learning from the collaborative learning inquiry described in the article’s title.
It’s also a very honest and transparent coach’s record of how he does what he does.
Coaching is close to home for me, and I wonder: Can you think of another industry which has so totally embraced blogging as a way to freely publish their case studies and strategic philosophies, opening up ‘comment conversation’ to a critical analysis of their business models, incorporating all they receive in near instant feedback loops?
This has happened very naturally in coaching for a couple of reasons.
- We seem to be a profession with little to no concern about competition. Coaching is a very personal relationship between client and coach, and that will always be the defining factor in whether or not a ‘booking’ happens. If there is no personal connection, and no trust between you, it will not work: Coach and client choose each other as people first. Therefore much can be freely given away online without any fear of infringement on your business.
- Coaches are obsessed with learning, and especially real-time current learning about the human condition. Besides the fact that we don’t view other coaches as competition, we understand that we need to learn from each other for the sake of helping our clients in the best possible way, fulfilling the profound responsibility we have in coaching them. Best place to learn about coaching that works well is from other coaches publishing online, and blogging has created a kind of coaching university for us. No tuition, class is always in session when you have a period free to catch it, and you can switch between being teacher and student at will.
- Writing is probably a primary or secondary strength for all coaches. Many will tell you that they have had journals for as long as they can remember, and that those journals eventually started to create some intellectual property for them, and an understanding about how people are not meant to live alone: We can help each other in a wealth of different ways. Then too, the more we write in other forms, the more we improve our communication skills, and blogging is an exceptional skill builder!
- Blogging has given coaches the voice they needed to become credible and valued, way more than any coaching certification could. Many of us who have been coaching for a while remember the early days when customers would make us promise not to name them on client lists, for everyone else would think they were problem children who were desperate.
My goodness, we have come a long way.
For instance, and for another great read, visit Arnie Herz of our Ho’ohana Community at his blog Legal Sanity (have always loved the name of Arnie’s blog!) He recently posted a short called Finding the right coaching approach wherein he shares some of his coaching results:
In a recent ABA Journal article titled Coach Me, Jenny B. Davis profiles the work of three professional coaches and their lawyer clients. I’m one of the featured coaches. The interesting thing about this inaugural run of the ABA Journal Coaching Project was it’s time frame. The coaches had just one month to help our clients “achieve peak performance.”
Coach Me takes full disclosure to a whole new level! Something to ponder as this was published by the American bar Association… What I especially liked about the article, was reading what the clients felt about their results – how do we get more of them to blog?!?
This is what lawyer Larry Koch had to say about his experience with Arnie’s coaching:
“I think most people need this type of assistance—someone to help them with planning, execution and accountability,” Koch says. “Especially with activities that don’t come naturally and for which you haven’t been trained.” Herz likens it to a golf swing that feels somewhat awkward at first, but that eventually becomes very natural.
The experience, says Koch, “made me think about other relationships, other possibilities—and then take a disciplined approach to it all.”
So much has changed in three short years. When I started Talking Story in August of 2004 I did a search for other coaching blogs and they were hard to find, particularly in business – most of my searches took me to lifestyle coaching. Today you have a wealth to choose from, and anyone can enroll in our online coaching university, sampling our ‘open source’ curriculum. For starters, visit these coaches in our Ho’ohana Community:
- Greg Balanko-Dickson for help with business plans and models
- Arnie Herz of Legal Sanity as we’ve visited above, would certainly be my choice for mediation services (you’ll be surprised how much that covers)
- Joanna Young on both Coaching and Confident Writing (Confident Writing is my new favorite blog)
- David Zinger is an employee engagement specialist using humor brilliantly
- Leah Maclean, who I have often referred to as our Queen of Technology
- Life Coach and Counselor Pete Aldin of Great Circle would be my recommendation to all fathers!
- For the women, mothers and businesswomen alike, visit Karen Wallace
- Coaching has us covered in Australia! Couples looking for relationship coaching should click in to Chris Owen of Take a Bite!
- Kevin Eikenberry writes Kevin’s Blog on Learning and has newly released his Remarkable Leadership system
- And don’t forget, that Lisa Haneberg is the one to visit this month for breakthrough coaching within our June Ho’ohana!
- Stacy Brice is the founder of AssistU, THE university for Virtual Assistants, and I love her Moxie and blog Virtualosophy (another great name!)
- Chris Bailey is out to redesign the work experience. Check out this coaching story: In Service to our Clients
- If you want to get published, visit Yvonne DiVita at Authors Helping Authors
- I often think of Dick Richards as my Ho’ohana partner in coaching, for Dick will help you discover your genius
An extra bonus for you: These are HC bloggers who don’t call themselves coaches, but they sure have been coaching me with the writing they offer on their blogs in such genuine expressions of aloha shared with us …
- Tim Milburn at studentl.inc who I have often called my hero
- Dwayne Melancon at Genuine Curiosity, who will never write enough to quench my thirst for his voice
- Phil Gerbyshak our Relationship Geek who is determined to help people unleash the greatness inside them
- Dave Rothacker, who personifies the real deal with his honesty and with his literary talent
- Steve Sherlock will always be a teacher at heart, with Tertiary Education just one of his classroom offerings
- Rich Griffith, who could be a management coach one day, whether he realizes it yet or not. If management is your calling, as it apparently is for Rich, coaching is what you do every day.
So much learning (and free coaching) just waiting for you! Grab their RSS feeds when you visit.
…some Archive Dipping here at Talking Story: