There is one thing that is common to every individual, relationship, team, family, organization, nation, economy and civilization throughout the world — one thing which, if removed, will destroy the most powerful government, the most successful business, the most thriving economy, the most influential leadership, the greatest friendship, the strongest character, the deepest love.
On the other hand, if developed and leveraged, that one thing has the potential to create unparalleled success and prosperity in every dimension of life.
That one thing is trust. It is the one thing that changes everything.”
-Stephen M.R. Covey, The Speed of Trust
Trust is the bedrock of good coaching. That is especially true of deep coaching where we’re holding the space for our clients to explore parts of themselves they may not be aware of. If there is no trust there is no possibility of having a true, deep connection. Therefore establishing trust is fundamental. In fact it is one of the 9 transformational deep coaching practices: “Cultivate Trust in the Mystery and Magic of the Transformational Process.”
So how do we build this foundation of trust with our clients?
Stephen Covey talks about personal credibility being at the heart of all trust. Personal credibility, as he states, is made up of integrity, intent, capabilities and results.
Below are the 13 behaviors he lays out that engender trust with an extended explanation of how it applies to deep coaching.
13 Behaviors That Engender Trust
- Talk Straight
Be honest, open, sincere and authentic in all your communication.
- Demonstrate Respect
Genuinely care for your clients. Honor what they’re saying without judging.
- Create Transparency
Clearly state what your clients can expect from your relationship. Make sure to let them know what they can come to expect from the deep coaching space as well. A coaching agreement is a good place to mention these things. Having a dialogue around expectations and confidentiality on the first call also helps to create a transparent and trusting environment.
- Right Wrongs
We’re not perfect. Whenever you make a mistake at whatever level, acknowledge it, accept that it happened and apologize when necessary.
- Show Loyalty
Always maintain confidentiality. Be your client’s number one supporter and let them know you have their back.
- Deliver Results
Delivering results is not a foundational part of deep coaching. While there are certainly results in deep coaching, they are not “delivered” by the coach but rather they are a part of a co-creation with Spirit, the client and the coaching space itself. Be fully present in the process and always do your best, trusting that the coaching process is delivering the results your clients need.
- Get Better
Continue learning, improving and getting better at your craft. Deep coaching is an ongoing process of greater refinement and mastery. Use your clients’ feedback to help make these improvements.
- Confront Reality
Don’t be afraid of “your stuff” or your clients “stuff.” Do the inner work necessary to face, and be able to hold the space for, whatever is brought up during the session.
- Clarify Expectations
Never assume expectations are obvious. Disclose and actively talk about your expectations as a coach and your client’s expectations of the relationship. Sometimes our client’s come to us looking for actions and “results.” Reiterate what the deep coaching space is all about.
- Practice Accountability
Hold yourself and your clients accountable for everything discussed in your sessions.
CHARACTER AND COMPETENCE
- Listen First
Listening is a fundamental tool of deep coaching. Listen deeply to your clients while letting go of any agendas, even the “spiritual” ones.
- Keep Commitments
Be on time and do what you say you’re going to do. If you need to reschedule an appointment let your clients know with enough time.
- Extend Trust
This is especially important in the deep coaching space. Trust that your clients and the space itself know exactly what is needed at that very moment.
Trust in the mystery and magic of the deep coaching process! The more you embody this trust, the more your clients will feed off of it and trust in it as well.