One of the hardest skills to learn as a coach is active listening – suspending judgment, assumptions and personal preferences to simply be with the client. To empathise fully with what the other person is experiencing and not want to ‘fix’ the issue.
A coach’s role is to help their client to come up with a solution themselves through skilful questioning rather than offering suggestions. This creates ownership by the client, meaning they’re more likely to follow through on their actions.
This isn’t only applicable in coaching, it’s a wonderful way to bring the best out in others at work or at home.
Active listening takes practice though. We need to stop ourselves:
💜Attaching meaning based on our model of the world, not theirs
💜Formulating an answer before they’ve finished speaking
💜Putting ourselves in their shoes and feeling how it is to be them
💜Probing to find out more about what they’re saying/why it’s important
💜Asking questions that allow them to see their issue from a different perspective, enabling them to come up with solutions themselves