Why coaching produces such great results
March 5, 2020
In today’s fast-paced, competitive and ever changing business world, coaching is considered as one of the most relevant activities to effect organisational learning. This is because most business sectors are now evolving and as they evolve, the competition in the market intensifies. Thus organisations in which leaders are trained, coached and equipped to capture commercial opportunities fare better in the competition. A senior manager of employee relations at a California-based biotech firm observed, “Coaching really expands people’s capabilities and therefore the capability of the organisation. It’s that link to business results that is often overlooked.”
The reason why coaching produces such great results is because of its psychological foundations. As opposed to some, coaching is a close relative of psychology. In fact, a number of seasoned coaches and psychologists believe that coaching emerged from psychology. This means that coaching and psychology go hand-in-hand; you simply cannot do coaching without having a foundation in psychology.
Psychology is defined as the scientific study of the mind and behaviour. Psychologists are actively involved in studying and understanding mental processes, brain functions, and behaviour. The field of psychology is considered a “Hub Science” with strong connections to the medical sciences, social sciences, and education (Boyack, Klavans, & Borner, 2005).
Studies show that using psychology at work can help solve workplace problems and bring about improvements in the workplace most especially in an employee’s behaviour and productivity. Psychology can help us better understand ourselves and other people’s behavior better which in turn enables us to come up with an approach that is tailored to that person’s uniqueness.
Here are the 4 approaches of Psychology that are foundational to coaching:
1.) Psychodynamic/Psychoanalytical approach
Psychodynamic/Psychoanalytical approach was first laid out by Sigmund Freud (1856-1939). Psychodynamic theories of personality were heavily influenced by his work and emphasise the influence of the unconscious on personality. This approach states that our behaviour is shaped and determined by unconscious motives, our childhood experiences and other interactions.
2.) Humanistic approach
Humanistic psychology or the humanistic approach deals with self-actualisation. It studies the whole person, and the uniqueness of each individual. The fundamental belief of humanistic psychologists is that people are innately good, and that mental and social problems are simply the result of deviations from this natural tendency. Humanist theories emphasise the importance of free will and individual experience in the development of personality.
3.) Transpersonal approach
Developed by American psychologist Abraham Maslow in the 1960s, the Transpersonal approach (also known as transpersonal counselling) is a humanistic approach to therapy. The term ‘transpersonal’ means ‘beyond the personal’, and this reflects the core aim of the therapy – to explore human growth and help people discover a deep and more enduring essential ‘self’ that exists beyond the conditioned ego.
4.) Behavioural approach
Behavioural psychology is a theory that states that all human behaviour is learned; thus all behaviour can be unlearned and new behaviours learned in its place. This approach simply states that any person, given the right training and conditioning, can do any task, regardless of genetics, traits and backgrounds. This approach is used in a variety of settings including both clinical and educational. Behavioural theories believe that personality is a result of interaction between the individual and the environment. Behaviourists study observable and measurable behaviours, rejecting theories that take internal thoughts and feelings into account.
The mind is the one responsible for one’s consciousness, actions and emotions. Understanding the mind is the first step to coaching. It gives the coach the ability to be aware of their client’s needs and to dynamically perform certain steps to surpass those needs. As James Conrad said, “The mind of man is capable of anything”.
To learn more about how coaching can benefit your organisation, or if you want to become a professional coach yourself, contact the Australian Institute of Professional Coaches on 1300 309 360 or visit our website www.professionalcoachtraining.com.au