A Coaching Model Created by Maiko Ueno-Murray
(Expats & Expat Spouses Coach, FRANCE)
This model is focused on expats and expat spouses. Living abroad, they face so many challenges such as language barriers, culture shock, loss of identities, careers, relationships, etc… My coaching model can help those who want to thrive abroad by creating their new stories in their host countries.
1 .Get ready! (Could be done in our 1st session)
Before the session starts, I would ask the client to share general information such as the country they currently live, where they are originally from or what brought them to the host country, etc… Through this conversation, I want them to relax, feel safe, and be ready to move on to the next step.
Here, I set up the coaching agreement. We talk about how client and coach work together, what coaching offers or does not offer, etc…to make sure that both client and coach are on the same page and ready to head toward the client’s goal together as partners. During the session, I will specifically stress the confidential nature of our discussion.
3. Goal setting
Now, we move to a goal setting. What do they want to achieve? What is their ideal outcome? I want them to imagine what happens next after they achieve their goals, too. Sometimes the goal that they imagine looks great at first, but when we explore it thoroughly, the client may find out it was not what they really wanted as their goal. I will take time for a goal setting to avoid any unintended consequences.
Once we set up a goal, we will take a look at who the client is, where they are and what is in their way that may prevent them from reaching their goals. The client also will explore their current feelings, where these feeling are coming from, etc… This stage encourages the clients to dive into deeper reflections.
Then, we investigate the client’s challenges. We look for some potential in these challenges. Any benefit to have these challenges? Any blind spots that the client has not noticed yet? Any hidden gems? Any cultural differences they should be aware of? I want them to fully explore these challenges until I see some shift in their perspectives.
Next step is to think about what tools could be used to reach their goals. What are the options? What resources could be used? Which talents/strengths/abilities could be used? Any support systems? What needs to be done? What needs to be left behind? How will they do it differently this time? I want them to be super creative and speak freely of all their ideas.
I will not move to next step until the client truly believes there is some possibility they can achieve their goals. Once they reach that point, we move to next step.
Finally we move to create an action plan. Our action plan should be specific, realistic and measurable. Having an accountability partner is always a good idea. But sometimes it is hard to find ones if the client is a new-comer to the host country. In that case I am happy to be their accountability partner.
8. Life goes on…
Implementing the action plan doesn’t mean our coaching sessions are over! During our continuing sessions, we evaluate our action plans, make adjustment if they are needed, and get back in the game again while acknowledging and celebrating the client’s accomplishments.
Living abroad is not always fun and exciting. But it is surely a great opportunity for an expat to rediscover who s/he is and create a new identity if they want to. My wish for them is to believe in their possibilities, enjoy the differences and thrive abroad. GO GLOBAL!