The following is an excerpt from Top Coaching Techniques.
David: Okay. So, I know a really nice model of coaching – I heard this from Laura Berman Fortgang at the ICF conference, and I really like it. Her model that she is using is very simple, and that is to begin each question with the word ‘what’.
So don’t ask them ‘why’. Never ask clients, ‘Why do you want to do that?’ or ‘Why do you feel like that?’ Just ask them ‘what’. You can ask them ‘how’, but again, try to start with what. It was really funny when we did the exercise, we had someone tell us about a problem, and we had to say ‘what’. Like, ‘Okay, what’s the solution?’ and they’d say, ‘Oh, I don’t know. I probably need to lose some weight.’ Then I’d say something like, ‘What’s the first step?’ and they’d say, ‘Oh, I probably should go to go to the gym.’ and I’d say, ‘What are you going to do at the gym?’ It was really amazing how it just focused them in, even if they didn’t know the answer. In five ‘what’ questions, they had it.