Michael Bungay Stanier is the founder and senior partner of Box of Crayons, a company that works with organizations, ranging from AstraZeneca to Xerox, to help them do more great work. A Rhodes scholar who earned both arts and law degrees with highest honors from Australian National University and an Master’s degree from Oxford, he is a popular speaker at business and coaching conferences, and was named Canadian Coach of the Year in 2006
He is also the author of a number of books, his latest book, The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever, was published in February 2016 and is a bestseller.
Bungay Stanier talks about how it is possible, in 10 minutes or less, to ask strategic questions to drive changes in behavior, have a more engaged, smart, autonomous team that will allow you to work less hard and have more impact …if you stay curious.
The 7 essential coaching questions that he talks about in his book are:
1. What’s on your mind?
● This open ended question brings up things that are most useful and valuable
2. And what else?
3. What’s the real challenge here for you?
● Focus question, if you ask this question more than once – the ‘challenge’ will shift. Once the person gets clear on what the challenge is, the person can often figure out the answer.
4. What do you want?
5. How can I help you? or What do you want from me?
● ‘Lazy question’ – allows you to find out what people are really looking for in terms of help
6. If you say yes to this, what must you say no to?
● Strategy question –
7. What was most useful or valuable here for you?
● This is a learning question, as a manager you are a teacher, so when people can reflect on what was most helpful. It also allows the manager to understand what was most helpful in this conversation
To have authentic conversations, the culture needs to be one in which employees feel safe to share. Consider TERA when considering your work environment.
TERA stands for:
Tribe – make it feel like ‘you & me’, rather than ‘you versus me’
Expectation – how do I know what is about to happen
Rank – how do I feel the same as you rather than less than you
Autonomy – how do I get to make some of the choices, rather than you telling me everything I need to do
Bungay Stanier advises employees who want to be coached by their managers to be the change they want to see in the world. Practice being more coach like yourself. Ask your manager for what you want (and buy the book!).
His advice to managers who want to get started as coaches is to pick one thing and see if you can get some traction on that. Go to coaching.com and download the first few chapters. Pick a question, build a habit around it, practice it and when you fall off the wagon, start again.
What you will learn in this episode:
● The 3 main coaching principles
● How coaching not only benefits employees but managers as well
● How coaching in 60 seconds or less is possible
● ‘Coaching’ is not only is a valuable process for business leaders but parents, teachers…anyone who is involved with people
Links from the episode: