How to Prepare for a Mentor Coaching Session
First things first, you will need to record a full coaching session with a client. The recording should be between 30 and 50 minutes. If you are meeting with your client in person, you can easily record the session using your phone or another recording device. If you are meeting with a client over the phone, put the phone you are talking to them with on speakerphone, and record the session with your computer or another recording device. Finally, if you are meeting via Skype, Facetime, etc., you can use your phone or another recording device to record the call.
It is recommended that you record a few different sessions with clients and then choose one that you feel the most confident about, or one that you think you could receive good feedback on. However, DO NOT record all of your coaching calls in a row and use them in consecutive mentor coaching sessions. The idea is for you to incorporate the feedback you receive from your mentor coaching sessions into your subsequent coaching calls. Recordings that are made three in a row will not be accepted for three individual mentor coaching sessions. If you do want to review multiple calls during one mentoring session you can – however, that mentoring session will only count as 1 out of the 10 that you need to be certified.
You do not need to send a recording to your mentor coach ahead of time. It is easiest for you to simply play the recording from your end and listen to the recording with your mentor coach, or mentor coaching group, via speaker phone or webinar.
Before your meeting with your mentor coach or mentor coaching group, be sure to listen to your recording and mark the time when you demonstrate each of these elements in the coaching call:
- The point in time when you establish a session agenda with your client. The agenda that you and your client agree to focus on during your time together on the call is one of the most important classic elements of a life coaching session. Is is also the element, that if it is missing, the rest of the coaching session greatly suffers.
- One of your favorite simple, curious questions that you asked and explored in the coaching call. It is helpful for you to mark a point during the call when you asked a really crisp and clear simple, curious question. It is even better if this questions was followed up by a pause that allowed your client time to think and ponder the question.
- The moment in your coaching call when you feel like you did the worst or you feel like you did not do a very good job as a coach. You also want to explore the things that you are not doing so well at in your coaching calls and be able to identify the areas that you want to improve on.
- The moment when you design the action step that your client is going to take and her or his accountability for that action. Usually, action and accountabilities come at the end a coaching session. It is useful to have the minute mark written down so that you and your mentor coach, or mentor coaching group, can quickly listen to how you wrap up the session and design an accountability with your client.
What to Expect in Feedback
Feedback is what the mentor coaching process is all about. You mentor coach, and those in your mentor coaching group, will provide you with constructive feedback on various areas of your coaching. Mentor coaching is a learning process, and the ultimate goal is for you to feel that you are growing and improving your skills as a coach.
Your coach will give you written feedback on your coaching, and this feedback will look at the following seven elements of your coaching:
1. Setting the Agenda
- Did the agenda come mostly from the client or is the coach pushing or not identifying the client’s agenda?
- Was the session agenda measurable?
2. Trust and intimacy with client
- How willing was the coach to be the client’s student?
- Did the coach ask permission to explore topics or use certain exercises?
3. Coaching Presence
- Was the coach bold in asking insightful or risky powerful questions?
- Did the coach work with the energy present in the call?
4. Active Listening and Powerful questions
- Did the coach ask short open ended questions?
- Were the questions primarily present or future tense oriented?
5. Direct communication
- Was the coach clear and sharing ideas providing feedback?
6. Creating awareness
- Did the client asked questions about clients Learning and self discovery?
7. Designing actions
- Does the coach invite an equal or greater degree of participation from the client for than a coach in designing action?
- How well does the designed action relate to the client’s agenda?
8. Managing progress and accountability
- Did the coach co-design methods of accountability with the client?
- Was the accountability clear and measurable?