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    Relationship Positioning System Workshop – A Success!!

    The latest workshop offering…The Relationship Positioning System Workshop was an unqualified success according to feedback from the participants. The mix of recognized relationship tools with new relationship technologies was a major factor in the day’s appeal for participants. The interactive agenda, filled with learning and awareness exercises, contributed to the excitement during the day and resulted in very enthusiastic participation. The workshop looked first at expanding our Awareness of Self from a strengths based perspective using a simple exercise to re-introduce participants to who they are when they are operating at their best. We designed a coaching alliance for how we wanted to be together during the day and established some basic ground rules for working together. We then looked at Awareness of Relationship from your existing “relationship mindset” to how to increase positivity in relationship. Thanks to the Center for Right Relationship for two outstanding relationship tools…The Meta Skills Wheel and The Original Myth.

    We spent some very useful time looking at values and how they affect all of our interactions. Following the workshop it was obvious that participants wanted more work with values as the exercise we used was noted as extremely impactful.

    We also explored Awareness of Others in the afternoon using another great CRR tool…Lands Work. Participants chose an issue and each then had an opportunity to explain what it’s like from their own perspective. They then got to spend some time in the other persons shoes and experience what it’s like from that side as well…revealing to say the least according to the participants.

    A powerful completion exercise then closed the day and solidified for all us the learning that had transpired.

    Here’s what some participants had to say…

    “I really enjoyed spending the day with you and Hugh at your relationships workshop — thought you did a great job, and what a lovely group of individuals/couples you attracted. This is really worthwhile work that you are doing and I hope your practice in this area flourishes. For my own part I particularly enjoyed seeing how  you had woven familiar and new tools together into something that really works. I would have no hesitation in referring to you couples who are at a turning point in life.”

    “I liked the role playing you both did to demonstrate …the learning points…and putting yourselves out their with the Lands work.”

    ” I am taking away better listening skills and the ability to compromise to find a middle ground.”

    “great tools and reminders to consider when dealing with issues in any type of relationship”

    “It provided a system that I can incorporate into all my important relationships.”

    For those of you that like stats here’s some…’

    Overall workshop ranking out of 5 was 4.4.

    Individual rankings were…

    Workshop Content Overall                   4.3

    Usefulness of Information                    4.2

    Easy to Understand                                 4.3

    Exercises                                                     4.7

    Facilities                                                      4.2

    Thanks to all who attended from both of us…you really made the day!!

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    Workshop Reminder

    Don’t  forget to register for the Relationship Positioning System Workshop May 1, 2010. Click here for full workshop and registration details.

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    Coaching and the Olympics

    Coaching Distinctions and Similarities from the Olympics

    So the Olympics are over! What are we going to do now? PVRs and DVRs all over the country are finally cooling down! But what a blast! Here’s to us Canada, eh?

    As we watched the Olympics it was easy to notice the presence of coaches everywhere. In curling, the coaches came onto the ice during time outs and helped the rinks with decisions. In speed skating coaches were evident along the sidelines offering encouragement as well as lap times as their athletes sped by. And there were various other examples of coaching playing a role in the Olympics.

    It’s interesting to note that even world class athletes and champions use coaches. After every ice skating session there were the coaches sitting shoulder to shoulder with the skaters waiting for their marks; the coaches often giving an encouraging or sympathetic pat on the knee.

    Most coaching in the athletic world is about skill levels, technique and presentation; a distinction from life coaching. However, world class athletes also employ psychologists to assist with the mental part of their game. You can see this aspect in downhill skiing where athletes have been taught to visualize the next ski run.

    So what does this have to do with life or business coaching? Well, as we watched the Olympics, we were struck with both the similarities and distinctions between coaching in the athletic arenas and coaching in the life and work realms. Some examples…

    Curling…as an example

    The coaches entered the conversations about shots and strategy, not to convince or advise but to offer different perspectives and possibilities. The curlers ultimately made their own choices. We were struck by the similarity to life, business and executive coaching where the agenda and final decision rests with the person or group being coached.

    Downhill skiing…as an example

    The art of visualization has long been a staple of life, business and executive coaching. Life coaches constantly urge clients to look down the road, see a desired outcome and a path or steps to achievement of their goals. Sounds a bit like the athletic community borrowed a tried and true technique doesn’t it?

    But what happens when the coach turns into advisor, consultant or expert? A distinction…

    Speed Skating…a perfect example

    Remember when the world champion speed skater from the Netherlands was far and away leading the 5000 km long distance event and literally had the gold medal in his hand? The race had a number of lane changes to be negotiated for each racer to ensure the overall distance covered was equal. On the last lane change the skater from the Netherlands…a world champion and experienced veteran made an  improper lane change and was disqualified; a devastating result. Reports suggest that the coach, a trusted and experienced advisor signaled the ill advised lane change.

    When coach becomes advisor we always run the risk of denying the athlete/manager/employee/person the right to choose their own path.

    A good reminder from of all places, the Olympics!

    One could also argue that life/business/executive coaches are also very much in the skills development game – just like athletic coaches with some important distinctions.  We simply partner with clients to create awareness and rediscover or uncover skills and abilities already present.  Athletic coaches are often chosen because of their expertise in a certain area and they must constantly critique to look for improvement.

    Some examples…


    The art of pausing to reflect upon what learning occurred in any human interaction is almost a mantra of life/business/executive coaching…just like athletic coaching.

    Strengths versus Weaknesses

    A strength based approach will always result in better performance sooner. The concept has been proven time and again from Adler to Galwey and remains a principle of most coaching disciplines. Just look at the Olympic athletes that did not look for what went wrong but concentrated on doing it right the next time. Medals ensued!


    Seems kind of a mundane piece for this blog but consider this. Life/business/executive coaches constantly assist clients in developing the how of what they want to achieve. Putting a self developed plan of action in place that reflects the goals set out by the clients themselves and is based on their own particular learning or operational styles – complete with how the client decides to keep themselves accountable. Sounds a lot like a training plan for an Olympic class athlete, doesn’t it? As one coach put it, the bigger the why, the easier the how. So for a coach, here’s the thing…getting clear on the why (WIIFM) makes the how really simple!

    We welcome your observations, comments and ideas.

    And for next time…how does our coaching reflect the International Coach Federation (ICF) Core Competencies for coaching?

    • Setting the Foundation
    • Co-Creating the Relationship
    • Communicating Effectively
    • Facilitating Learning and Results
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    2010 European Coaching Conference Paris France

    Paris in the Spring! What a delightful way to increase your coaching skills and knowlege as well as connect with colleagues from around the world. Plan to be there June 17-19, 2010. See more at http://www.eccparis2010.com.

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    Relationship Positioning System

    Watch for details on our upcoming program scheduled for March 6/10. Relationship Positioning System – What do you want in yours??

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