Trust: The House of Coaching

At Ideal Coaching Global (ICG), we say that trust is the ‘house of coaching’– the true place where deeply satisfying results are produced for our clients. Clients are not just going to hand over their fears and worries and the design of their future to just anyone. Meaningful and successful coaching happens within a context and relationship of mutual trust.

But what is trust? Is it a spontaneous or arbitrary feeling or sensation generated from deep within ourselves? When we say, “I trust,” what are we trusting– the person, the situation, ourselves?

Trust is such a critical element of our everyday lives: it is mandatory for effective and satisfying relationships. We invent and design our futures together and trust is critical to this, even with the stranger driving on the road. While trust is the fabric of our existence, have you ever explored or questioned what you mean when you utter the word ‘trust’?

In his book Conversations for Action and Collected Essays, Fernando Flores, Ph.D. Distinguishes trust first and foremost as a set of linguistic distinctions– not as feelings or sensations. Dr. Flores distinguishes four separate concerns that are always relevant to our judgment or assessment of trust in the relationship:

Sincerity, Competency, Reliability and Engagement

We typically do not “trust” all people in all areas of life. We trust a mechanic to fix our car, not our broken leg. When we agree to move forward with someone, we are making a judgement of them in the four elements listed above. We too are agreeing to practice these four elements, which then binds each person to the other for a future outcome.

During your coach education at ICG, we study trust in depth. We practice, read, discuss and learn that trust is more than a two-way street– I trust you, you trust me. We practice the above distinctions, learning to listen if the elements are present and trust can be granted. If any elements are missing, we can ask clarifying questions and together come to an agreement that the probability of the future we are designing together is either high, medium or low. Since we cannot predict the future nor do we want to be enslaved to our commitments, we leaned to navigate the unexpected and renegotiate our agreements so that trust is maintained, if not enhanced.

In learning to coach, we explore how to listen to another person to determine what they need to feel heard and therefore trusting of their coach. People give many types of cues, including linguistic cues, indicating what they require from the other to assess trust. When we can provide what they are asking for, trust is quickly built in the coaching relationship. We teach you how to listen for these queues, putting aside your thoughts on what you think they need and listen them, not yourself.

When we accept their requirements, which usually are not complicated or demanding, trust builds. Mutual respect builds as people reveal more about themselves, what deeply concerns them and what they long to create in their lives. You become their partner and share in the joy of their achievement.

Come join us and while you are learning to be a world-class coach, you will also learn to be a world-class trust builder. For trust is not only the house of coaching, it is what holds and binds us together in deeply meaningful and rewarding relationships. And who wouldn’t want a few more of those?

© 2017, Ideal Coaching Global, Merle McKinley, PCC (Ideal Coaching Global’s Senior Staff Coach)

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