How to Have an Effective Coaching Conversation
This week, we’re answering a question that many new coaches have – how do you have an effective coaching conversation? More importantly, how do you make sure the conversation goes the way you want, where the teacher feels supported and you’re getting an outcome of improved student learning?
Here are our top three tips for having an effective coaching conversation:
- Set groundwork for your conversation
The best way to get a coaching conversation started is to make sure you and the teacher understand what the expected learning outcome is that you’re focusing on. It’s a good idea to make sure you’re both on the same page before realizing later that you and the teacher had different ideas about where the conversation was going to go.
Good questions to ask set the groundwork for the conversation include:
- What is it we want students to learn?
- What is the desired outcome of this conversation?
- Are we on the same page?
To have an effective coaching conversation, it’s important to allow the teacher to talk and get it all out. It can be difficult sometimes to not jump in and offer advice or suggest a tool, but it’s important to just listen for awhile. A majority of your coaching conversation should be listening to the person you’re working with. To make sure you’re fully understanding what the expected outcome is of the conversation, try paraphrasing what the teacher has said before continuing your conversation.
- Don’t evaluate
Having a successful coaching conversation and relationship with a teacher relies on that person knowing you’re not evaluating them. This is important to help encourage further conversations with teachers. Even positive feedback, such as “great idea,” is still evaluating their progress. Try using non-evaluative language as much as possible by focusing on student learning outcomes.
If you’re interested in learning more about having effective coaching conversations, make sure to join us on Facebook Live with Kim Cofino Thursday, March 8th at 5PM PST for more perspective on this topic! Kim will be joined by Chrissy Hellyer and Jeff Utecht to talk more in-depth about how to have an effective coaching conversation.
Interested in learning more ways to have an effective coaching conversation? Download this week’s freebie, “Difficult Conversations: 8 Tips to Walk the Tightrope Between Coaching Heavy and Coaching Light.”