Become a More Effective Leader with the COACH Model

Hi there, Russell Stratton, president and leadership champion with Bluegem Learning.

I work with organizations just like yours to help managers be even more effective at improving individual and team performance.

What I want you to talk to you about today is about coaching made easy...

One of the challenges that we have when we ask our managers to be coaches is that it's a little bit daunting for them...

They get this mental picture in their mind that a coach is somebody who stands on the bench, shouting instructions to their players...

or it's some sort of lifestyle guru who's going to sit there for hours meditating with their students.

In fact, it's nothing like this at all.

What I'd like to offer you is a simple coaching model that you annual managers can use to help coach improved performance and get those increased results.

The model I'm talking about is one that I devised with my colleague Ken Cameron.

The C.O.A.C.H Model breaks down into five stages.

Think of it as a conversation, and these are just five elements of the conversation that you're going to have with the employee.

The first stage is all about the current situation.

With this, you're asking the employee questions that help explore what the current situation is for them.

What are the issues? What's going on for them? What are the priorities that they need help with?

The second stage is all about the outcomes, the desired.

If we understand what the context of the situation is, what is it that they specifically want to achieve?

What goals do they have for this particular week, for this month, or perhaps for the project that they're working on?

The third stage is our brainstorming.

This is when we're looking at the possible actions. Here we're getting them to brainstorm ideas for what they might do.

The important thing here is to not leave anything off the table and let our suggestions be as broad as possible so that we don't lose any of those good creative thoughts.

The fourth stage of our conversation is all about critical choice.

This is when we can start helping our employee to break down those ideas that they had in the possible actions, into concrete ideas for two, or maybe three specific actions that they think they could take that will help them achieve their goal in the situation they're dealing with.

Finally, we want to make sure that we don't close the conversation before we've held them accountable.

Here we're asking them maybe even a simple question like...

what's the next step that you're going to take? Or...

what's the first thing that you're going to do tomorrow?

We want to make sure that people don't just say that was a good conversation and walk away and do nothing, but that they actually take some action!

If you found that model useful, or think there's something that you could use with your employees or perhaps your managers can use with their team...

Then why don't you join us at our June Lunch and Learn, Coaching for Results at the Central Library in downtown Calgary?

You can try it out for real and see what it's like!

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"Bluegem Learning & Development and Corporate Culture Shift have presented two very effective and interactive workshops with our organization. Their comedic and engaging presentation style in the ‘Managing the Unmanageable’ workshop has left a lasting impression on our staff. I highly recommend this workshop if you are looking for a valuable, cost effective customer service training option."

- Jeff Gerestein, City of Brooks

"Russell produced a highly engaging HR programme that reflected our organisational issues. He is without doubt an outstanding training deliverer, challenging managers to address what can be difficult HR issues. I highly recommend Russell, and would always seek to engage Russell on future learning development opportunities."

- Sharon Gartland, DSG Consultancy Services

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Russell Stratton

Leadership Champion

RUSSELL STRATTON is an international Leadership Expert, Professionally Certified Trainer and Coach, with a Masters Degree in Human Resource Management. He is co-author of the book 'I Need to F@#king Talk To You - The Art Of Navigating Difficult Workplace Conversations'.


He is a Master Facilitator for Bluegem Learning's ground breaking "Leadership Success" workshop series - providing a practical toolkit for building engagement and improving individual and team performance. Using live actors in a stop/start forum theatre approach and a combination of dynamic experiential learning techniques, participants come away with a greater ability to actually perform better as employees and leaders in your organization.


He is an accomplished management education, learning & development professional with a proven track record of working with clients in the public, voluntary and private sectors to achieve lasting, measurable step changes in business performance.


Russell works internationally with a wide range of organizational cultures and with all levels from front line customer facing staff to executive management boards. Having worked as both a Personnel Manager and Operational Manager he works at both strategic and tactical levels.

#300, 160 Quarry Park Blvd.  Calgary,

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