How to Coach Change

Each year, just before I head abroad for my family holiday, I always carry out a crucial task before I leave. All the PCs on our network get cleaned, reformatted and wiped fresh. All those unwanted files, duplicated documents, unwanted DLLs, irrelevant EXEs, corrupt programmes.  Anything that’s no longer needed gets deleted to leave a fresh hard-drive ready for the work that’s going to hit them in the autumn. 

The result?  A faster, more manageable flexible system that meets the demands of the future.

In a similar manner, when you’re coaching people particularly when there’s change to be navigated, and let’s face it, when isn’t there, we need to think about re-formatting your coachee’s hard-drive first. Work with them to remove any unwanted ideas or strategies, corrupt thinking, old goals and objectives. Clean them up first and then coach the new goals.

Often this is the hard part as people are loath to give things up. The way it’s always been done around here, past successes that still make them feel good, strategies that have worked in the past.

In the 21st Century, it’s no longer profitable to learn stuff and achieve results. No, today we first need to unlearn stuff first before we can learn something new. Learn, unlearn, re-learn. And those that can unlearn the fastest will be the winners so when coaching help your coachee to be successful by working on formatting their hard-drive.

And maybe one day, it will be as easy as typing in the command “format c:/s” into our brain. Hopefully this is a long way off.

Pssst. Hands up all those who remember the old DOS command in the last paragraph?