Ian and I have an exciting couple of weeks coming up as FACTS coaching embarks upon its autumn tour. On Monday, we facilitate a workshop for the internal coaching community of Network Rail. On Thursday, we are hosting a master class at Chester University on behalf of the consultancy LeaderShape. A week later we head abroad, first to Stockholm to help launch the Next Leader Programme in global IT consultancy CGI and then on to Germany where Rainer Husmann has invited us to host a session at the 20th anniversary of the coaching network Context Coaching. Finally, at the end of the month we host our second FACTS coaching master class at the Academy of Executive Coaching in London. Phew!
Every time we present we aim to refine and develop our work. For example, we now have a self-assessment questionnaire for working with the FACTS coaching model. This is a free download from our web site. We use the self-assessment questionnaire to help participants at our events raise their self-awareness regarding the edge of their challenging coaching skills. Working in pairs, they co-coach the outcome of the questionnaire to identify strengths and development areas and build commitment to practice specific skills.
Another aspect that has developed further in the FACTS coaching model is the topic of courageous goals. A few months ago, Ian came across this ‘moonshot thinking’ video clip which captures the essence of courageous goal-setting. We love this video. When we show it to a room full of coaches or leaders I always get tingles down my spine. The bigger the room, the more the people, the greater the tingles will be. It provides an inspiring introduction to the topic and then we invite attendees to work with the concept using the NLP timeline concept, or ‘walking the line’ as we now refer to it. As the name implies, this can be a daunting exercise challenging participants to envision their boldest future.
In the one day sessions we get a chance to explore some of the deeper aspects of FACTS coaching such as systems thinking. Strictly a session for those with an open mind, we introduce the terms sub-optimisation, emergence, leverage points and fractals. Always keen to bring the message to life through video clips we use this amusing clip to showcase the butterfly effect and this clip to stretch attendees thinking in the area of fractals. Personally, I find this a challenging slot since it taps into my deeper spiritual beliefs and my gremlin voice starts to whisper ‘You’re a crackpot Blakey! Away with the fairies you are! Completely off your trolley’. It’s a good job I have Ian to keep my feet on the ground!
It is never routine because the audience is always different. Someone will ask a new question. Someone will offer some interesting research references. Someone else will come up in the coffee break and say ‘Hey, have you read the book by…..?’ Sometimes we will kick ourselves that we didn’t come across all these resources before we created FACTS coaching though at least we have this blog to keep relaying new updates, developments and experiences.
All in all, it is a privilege to do what we do. To have a voice. To share. To collaborate. It has given us both a sense of purpose. So whether you are an independent coach, internal coach, senior leader or HR professional, thank you for coming along to our events over the next few weeks. Whether it is in London, Warrington, Stockholm or Cologne we will be challenging you to challenge more. As we embark on our autumn tour, we will be working hard to ensure you leave the sessions inspired, engaged and ready to face the FACTS.