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Desert Highway
Thoughtful writing authored and shared by members of of the Thinking Collaborative community to support others on the journey.

Sustaining the Journey

The Recalcitrant Coachee

Authored By:

Thinking Collaborative


October 30, 2017

How might one might deal with the recalcitrant coachee? How does one manage coaching with a person who exhibits directly or indirectly behavior that suggests that he or she does not want to engage in this type of conversation. There is probably not a single, “right” answer to those questions. However, some notions that you might take into consideration include:

• Relationship: Concentrate on securing a trusting relationship with the person. Relationship first, thinking second.

• Beliefs and identity: Consider what beliefs or identity issues might be affecting the person’s attitude towards a coaching relationship.

• States of Mind: Analyze the individual’s States of Mind to determine which state of mind might be low and interfering with his/her openness to working collaboratively.

• Be inclusive: Utilize the experience, talent, and expertise of the resistant individual in the work that you are doing, providing them with leadership opportunities.

• Be patient: If a coaching relationship is new, it may take some time to achieve a workable level of mutual understanding. Maintain a positive attitude towards the individual and assume positive intentionality on his/her part.

• Be persistent: Don’t give up!

• Be proactive: Search for personal initiatives that will contribute to working successfully with the individual.

• Preservation: Don’t wear yourself out fighting resistance. Spend 80% of your time working with those who are positive, appreciative, and benefiting from your efforts.

This week ask yourself how you respond to difficult people. Which strategies might be useful in your thoughts?

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