The ABC’s ‘XCC’ (highest accreditation) means nothing!– Chinese consultant, tasked with staffing coaching program for a client organization (academic institution)
I interviewed three WCC’s, and three XCC’s, and cannot position one them on an executive coaching team…, they don’t understand the difference between life and executive coaching.Japanese GM of the local branch of an international learning solutions provider.– Japanese GM of the local branch of an international learning solutions provider.
We know we need to build coaching into our service offering, but we cannot find local coaches capable of working to our standards. Japanese Senior Consultant, Japan branch, global consulting firm.– Japanese Senior Consultant, Japan branch, global consulting firm.
This Asia-based coach has experienced similar frustration in attempting to align (to a small degree) a team of coaches around a common methodology (the client’s) project guidelines and goals (the client’s) – executing, and, maybe, learning something from this activity.
It seems to me that while these challenges don’t speak directly to the non-directive coaching imperative, i.e. what we do, and do not do in our work with individual clients, they strongly suggest that the “ABC” competency model, (which, coincidentally, purports to be non-directive):
1) does not encompass knowledge bases, skill sets, behaviors, and attitudes associated with executive coaching practice, or the organizational intelligence necessary to participate in complex projects;
and, specific to attitudes and behaviors,
2) does not facilitate a ‘hearing’ of, and an appropriate response to client needs;
And, because this coach is aware that a global chorus of practitioners have, over many years, provided feedback regarding the limitations of this model; with little meaningful response, I will add,
3) does not encompass the knowledge bases, skills sets, behaviors, and attitudes associated with the ability to reframe and revise competency models.
My recent review of the historical/philosophical antecedents of various schools of coaching has caused me to revise my assumptions about capability issues in Asia, e.g. that they are the result of language constraints, cultural gaps, inadequate resources. This revision was facilitated, too, by an incredible statement made to me by an “ABC” mentor coach, that being:
Coaching has come to mean many things to many people…, which translates to, there are no standards.
Evidently, this party has never had to ‘rationalize’ a failed project to a corporate client.
My research suggests that:
1) coach competency deficit, in any geography, are likely a direct result of poorly researched and designed coach competency models; the “ABC” model, being but one of these;
2) the development of robust global coach competency frameworks and learning resources has been impeded by the heuristic and epistemological orientation of certain schools of coaching.
3) while gaps and cracks in coach capabilities may be less glaring in locations in which practitioners have access to abundant resources in their own languages – they exist, and present in a profile similar to what is seen in Asia.
Part II will explore the origins of this dysfunction.