Improving Coaching Conversations: Part 3 of 3

Improving Coaching Conversations | Leadership Worth Following

In Part 1, we outlined suggestions for more effective coaching conversations, including a recommended, 4-step approach. Part 2 was a summary of two other perspectives on coaching.

​In this final installment, we discuss how these conversations can be made even more effective by addressing the coachee’s values/drivers.

Understand Motivations.

As a coach, anything that helps you understand the unique motivations of your coachee will aid in personalizing and framing the feedback conversations. Heightened self-knowledge can also provide valuable benefits to the coachee.

​These are important reasons we at Leadership Worth Following developed the new DRiV assessment tool. It goes beyond personality assessments to gauge what people believe they should do, what they want to do, and what they actually do within a given scenario.

The DRiV questionnaire uses a multi-factor model (including Impact, Insight, Connection, and Harmony) that encompasses more than 30 drivers. Our research on thousands of DRiV administrations has uncovered common patterns, or “DRiV profiles”, that describe how individual drivers typically work together.

Underpinning each DRiV profile is a unique psychological “fingerprint” of someone’s beliefs, preferences and habits. Analyzing the DRiV profiles of multiple employees or team members can help improve understanding and management of team dynamics, both for regular interactions and also coaching conversations.


Personal Perspective.

Dr. Chris Coultas of LWF shares this example from his own work experience to help illustrate the DRiV’s benefits in coaching conversations.

“My DRiV report shows I’m very low on Connection: I like to do my own thing and I sometimes feel like relationships can get in the way of work. Instead of collaborating, I’d much rather have the freedom to execute independently.

“But because I work in a highly collaborative culture with colleagues who rate highly for valuing Connection, my own preferred level of autonomy is unrealistic and counterproductive. My DRiV profile also shows I’m extremely high on Impact, Insight, and Productivity. As a coachee, I’ve been taught that achieving the Impact and Productivity I desire will require me to engage in Connection behaviors.

“Taking the time to slow down and connect with others will never be my favorite activity, but armed with this enhanced self-awareness, I have started intentionally engaging in more Connection behaviors. This has earned me more credibility and – paradoxically – greater freedom to execute more independently.

“Additionally, I can relate to my co-workers more enjoyably by finding and leveraging our overlapping drivers. A common one at LWF is Creativity; I appreciate connecting with my colleagues during brainstorming sessions.”


How About You?

From your work experience, what advice would you offer to improve the effectiveness of coaching conversations, as either the coach or coachee? What coaching situations have you been a part of – effective or non-effective – that taught you valuable lessons?