“Can you come and do some training on coaching skills for our managers?”
“Sure” I said. “Tell me a bit more about what you want”
“Well… we want something a bit different. We’re bored with the usual model”
I like a challenge, especially when it involves training techniques. I began to research different coaching models – there are many of them out there with merit, mostly based on an acronym, with a lot of similar content. Before long I couldn’t see the wood for the trees.
Pretty quickly I decided that to make it really memorable, delegates deserved more than an acronym, it needed to be visually appealing too. I wanted a model, but I was quite specific about what it needed to contain. If you want a job done well…. do it yourself, they say. They also say hire a professional if you want a proper job, so pity my graphic designer when I turned up with terrible sketches of abandoned ideas. Fortunately she is a smart cookie and grasped what I was trying to achieve.
Now, if you’ve trained with me, you’ll know I have an anecdote or three to demonstrate most points, but the research on the power of stories was also niggling me. I kept bumping into articles and conversations about the power of storytelling. I knew about The Hero’s Journey and that our brains appear to be hardwired to not only remember stories based on this format, but that we find them ultimately satisfying – we want the hero to face adversities, overcome them and triumph. Then we remember. I’ve read that facts and figures activate two areas of our brain, and stories seven, making them a much richer experience than, say, a Powerpoint presentation.
I’ve never based a whole training course around a story. Until now. I sat down with the framework for The Hero’s Journey, my coaching model, and the new artwork I had. After many twists, turns and edits, eventually The Story of Thrugmunk was born, about a man with a problem who is coached by King Offa to find a way out. It is a tale of a coaching session that demonstrates the model and skills needed, overlaid onto the framework of The Hero’s Journey to make it stick.
I’ve had several opportunities now to run the course, and feedback has been excellent. By telling the story near the beginning of the training, delegates quickly grasp both the coaching process and the skills needed to coach effectively. Thrugmunk acts as a lynchpin throughout; as delegates explore and practise skills, they refer back to King Offa. The back page of the training manual is a graphic of the whole model. I was pleased to see that delegates could glance at it and follow it easily during coaching practice.
If your people would enjoy learning some coaching skills, why not try something a little different? You can find the Course Outline here. Please do get in touch if you want to know more or book a course.
firstname.lastname@example.org or 0845 5197 571 (local rate)
What Delegates are Saying:
Positive, consolidating, extremely useful
Fun and practical
Collaborative.Positive. A breath of fresh air. Useful. Fun.
Very useful to have a set of tools that can be used on a daily basis to get the most from our team.
Good programme, the length was right to enable a deeper understanding of the tools
It was an intensive programme but delivered in a way that made it feel possible to take on and implement
Engaging, thought provoking, good at getting you to think and consolidating the learning with practise.
A highly useful and practical session that gave you the tools to use and the space to practise them whilst still fresh
Useful, engaging, helps you build skills you can use, builds confidence.
Excellent use of exercises
Story made everyone relax
The course was very well planned and beneficial