A common fault of would-be coaches is to ‘know’ what needs to be done and then ‘tell’ a person how. In fact a good coach needs more subtle skills – an ability to listen, show empathy and not be judgmental. A coach is not all-knowing nor the ‘expert’. In this activity, carried out in threes, one person is coached in a unique but simple counting system that uses wooden blocks. A second person, acting as coach, is there to help but under strict guidelines. He/she, for example, cannot touch the blocks. A third person, the observer, checks that rules are followed and notes what happens. Can the coach actually keep their hands off the blocks, perform a true coaching role and guide the person to a full understanding of the counting system. To many people coaching doesn’t come naturally – but it’s easier once you know how!
- Divide the group into threes – a coach, an individual to be coached and an observer. With odd numbers drop the observer
- Before the coaching session starts ask all coaches to form one group, all individuals a second group and all the observers a third
- Issue each group with the appropriate Brief.Allow time to read, discuss and plan for their particular roles in the coaching session
- Re-form in groups of three - coach, individual,observer and begin the coaching session. Allow30 - 40 minutes
- Near the end give each observer a Test Numbers card to test the success of the coaching session
- Form the groups back into plenary and discuss what happened in each coaching session. List the key learning that emerged
- Issue the Key Points Handout to consolidate the learning.
Trainer’s Notes contain full guidance and a mass of back-up information on coaching skills.
- stresses that the key role of the coach is to uncover and guide
- stresses that coaching is not about all-knowing, telling gurus
- provides a coaching situation in which to practise coaching skills like listening, questioning and choosing words carefully
- illustrates the importance of creating a self-discovery scenario
- identifies the need to ‘read’ the person being coached – what approaches work and what do not.
No. of People
For up to 12 people in sets of three
- Trainer’s Notes
- CD (with reprint files)
- Coaches Briefs
- Individuals’ Briefs
- Observers’ Briefs
- Test Numbers Card
- Key Points Handout
- Sets of Wood Cubes
"Excellent hands-on learning."
- K. Houseman, Consultant
Very useful outcomes
"Very positive feedback from delegates who found the session very useful."
- M. Eastwood, Consultant
Another good Northgate game
"Challenging but enjoyable and brings out many practical points about mentoring or coaching."
-M. Miles, Elite Training Intl.
- Download 2983 Coaching and Mentoring Factsheet
Only preview versions of handouts can be viewed without a license.