Getting to the detail

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Getting to the detail 

Whatever your coaching style or specialism, you will see progress with your clients if you are able to quickly create an atmosphere of trust and collaboration within your coaching sessions. This is normally based on the fundamental belief that your clients can find their own solution, but with some help from you through techniques like active listening and strategic questioning to get to the detail, you can really help them identify and overcome any obstacles that hinder their progress or success in life.


In your role as coach, you will:

  • Encourage – to get your clients out of their comfort zone and explore new behavior
  • Empower – so they can find their own solution
  • Support – to identify smart objectives and achieve goals
  • Stimulate – their personal and professional development

Your coaching style can be helpful in promoting the development of solutions to remove the brakes, use and capitalize on the resources available and facilitate a positive and creative mindset.


One-to-One Coaching

Effective one-to-one coaching can really help your clients identify how they will react in difficult or stressful situations and how they can make full use of any natural talents to leverage the existing strengths they may not always be unaware of. By asking the right questions and getting to the detail, you can help them focus on the actions and outcomes they would like to see happen within their lives and then develop detailed step-by-step action plans so they can track their progress over time.

The global pandemic may be one topic you have discussed many times with your clients because some of them will find this type of situation difficult to navigate, or they may have simply been unable to plan for the future due to the ever-changing restrictions and lockdowns. Within our coaching manual we suggest using a two-stage approach for this type of conversation so you can offer some help in exploring how they could plan for the future and start making progress:

Stage One – The initial questions

Ask open questions about a topic like Covid19 and how they feel about it. Explore their personal experiences so far and try to understand how they are currently feeling. Make a note of any recurring themes or topics they return to, as you may want to explore these in more detail.

Stage two – Getting to the detail

Review your notes and playback what you heard to check you captured everything correctly. Now ask some more specific follow up questions to explore the detail behind the answers they initially gave. Then have them make a list of any positive experiences they can think of from the last 18 months.

Some examples may include:

  • Having extra time with family
  • Trying new things or starting new hobbies
  • New ways of working and using technology to stay connected
  • Getting outside and seeing more wildlife
  • Improvements in air quality


And finally, ask them to make a list of any negative thoughts they may have towards the global pandemic or Covid19. You can use this to explore their feelings and where they come from, or what the triggers could be. The aim is to try to identify, and then work to remove any negative associations they may have so they can focus their energy on the things that make them feel happy or more positive.

And because we know self-awareness is where true growth happens, you may want to work on this with your clients. Start to build their awareness so they can clearly understand how they would normally respond in a difficult or challenging situation. Where appropriate, by using an example like the global pandemic and asking the right questions, you can unlock the detail needed during a coaching session to really help them understand where their emotions come from. It also helps them learn to spot these feelings before they take hold.

And remember, everybody will react differently to situations like this, so it’s important to find the right topic. If something becomes a theme of your conversations and seems to be holding them back in some way, explore it with them and see where your questions take things.

So no matter what the focus may initially be, listening carefully and asking the right questions will help you get to the detail needed, so you can explore options and help your clients learn to develop a new approach to anything that may hold them back from achieving their full potential.


Further reading:

If you would like to know what questions to ask so you can quickly get to the detail and help your clients focus on the future, check out this exclusive ebook in our online shop:

Ebook : The Coaching Manual – With 185 questions, fables, worksheets and tools, this comprehensive coaching manual will help you run successful coaching sessions. We have also included an introduction to Neuro Linguistic Programming and Transactional Analysis.


We have also published a range of ebooks, games and kits to help you within your coaching sessions:


We constantly add content to the site, so please check our on-line shop and look at the full range of games, ebooks and kits. Or read some of the other blog posts written by our team of international coaches.


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