A Coaching Model By Angela Stockinger, Career Coach, SPAIN
The Three Pillars Confidence, Growth, and Innovation
Workplace engagement is closely tied to our purpose and manifests in our overall feeling of fulfillment. As per the 2022 Gallup engagement study, only 15% of employees worldwide and 35% in the U.S. fall in the “engaged” category. The question “How happy are you at work?” is important in our modern workplace, however, answers are not always straightforward but often multifaceted and complex.
Workplace engagement measures not just happiness but well-being, and how emotionally invested people are in their company’s goals.
As a career coach, I am aiming to support people who are open to reflecting on their current sense of fulfillment at work, open to identifying their core values and understanding why they are important for their career, and open to exploring their options, visualizing, and designing their path. Career exploration, career transitions, and career design are for a broad audience, they are not only for new grads or a few braves who move into a totally new industry halfway through their career. In today’s market, we are the owners of our careers, just like entrepreneurs, and if we wanted to feel more fulfilled and happier at work, we can start exploring what to change.
My coaching model is based on three pillars – Confidence, Growth, and Innovation – which I consider interconnected. To me, confidence is a skill we can learn and practice, growth is a mindset we can obtain, and innovation is an output considered either new or different and valuable in the market, and it is enabled by both concepts prior. These three pillars will frame my coaching style, the coaching process overall, and the tools I am considering using.
The Coaching Model – Pillars (Confidence, Growth, and Innovation)
What Is Confidence?
It is difficult to define confidence, most people would probably define it as a feeling or a personality trait, however, in order to progress and grow, I am working with the definition of confidence as the willingness to try, a willingness to act, even when facing uncertainty. It is a skill that can be learned, trained, and flexed like a muscle.
What Is Growth?
Growth stands for growth mindset; the belief that we can learn, improve and grow with dedication, hard work, and practice.
What Is Innovation?
The term itself and its associations with it make innovation a broad concept. In its pure form, it can be defined as a measurable, demonstrable difference in a product, idea, service, methodology, etc. however, in the context of this coaching model, I am referring to innovation as taking action and/ or a creative contribution.
The Coaching Model – Context
When we think about our desired future, we often blend out how we want to get there. It often scares us to think about the process, the ups, and downs, and the amount of change involved. The fact is, few of us are good with change. Even when we anticipate that the outcome of the change will be positive, we might experience anxiety. I believe confidence is key to becoming comfortable with change – it will be the client’s main support in taking the first step, potentially becoming more open to taking smart risks and being outside their comfort zone.
The key is understanding the role confidence plays in the client’s current world and if there are any limiting beliefs holding them back. It is important to understand what builds their confidence, and how they want to allow for and nurture it.
Confidence is a powerful resource and building block when establishing a growth mindset. Being curious and open to learning from any experience combined with the appetite to continue working on themselves will help clients when exploring and designing their careers. Both confidence and a growth mindset might also boost each other, help build positive momentum around change, and uncertainty and reduce the impact of setbacks on their journey.
The last stage of the coaching model is innovation, which focuses on the client feeling powerful enough to make a difference. Innovation connects here to the ever-present encouragement to “think outside the box”, challenge the status quo, and proof out things quickly, which can be– particularly when part of a larger organizational structure –very difficult to unlock. Innovation is not limited to a small number of exclusive people or crazy lab professors; innovation is for everyone. Feeling empowered to innovate will add to the sense of purpose and feeling of engagement in the workplace.
Confidence, Growth, and Innovation – Applied
Step 1: Getting to know the client, and their character strengths. As part of this phase, I will propose to the client to take a personality assessment (DiSC or the VIA Survey of Character Strengths) and review the results together.
Step 2: Understanding their current situation, challenges, and limiting beliefs.
Step 3: Core values. Identifying core values or gaining more clarity on them sounds like a simple idea but is difficult to apply. The “Why” method – is normally used for root cause analysis but can also serve to find the core value behind a certain action or situation the client found themselves in. I aim to use the tool organically during coaching by questioning statements repeatedly with “Why?”, up five to seven times, five to seven layers down. Naturally, the answers “should” go from something situational or action-oriented to a value word.
Step 4: Where does the client want to be? This is about identifying what the client wants for their future. A “Best Possible Future Self” exercise will be proposed to the client where they write for 15 minutes per day for 7-14 days about their best possible future self around the topic of their professional career. The goal is to learn about what they want in life and identify goals and priorities.
Step 5: High-level goal setting, reframing perspectives. Personal development is often purely focused on areas for improvement. We seek constructive feedback, we identify imperfections, and we create strategies to increase performance. I aim to use “reframing the perspective” to increase the client’s awareness of how they might self-sabotage and hold themselves back.
Step 6: Habit building, breaking goals into small enough steps that allow the client to feel accomplished and successful. The overall goal is to make the client believe in their success.
Step 7: Accountability and resilience.
Step 8: Learning goals.
Best Possible Self