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Why Virtual Coaching Works

Why Virtual Coaching Works

… and is often more effective than face-to-face coaching

 

I practiced my first virtual coaching session many years back, long before Zoom, and even Skype was just at its beginning. The client was a Managing Director of a global medical supplier, based in Eastern Europe, and he was not yet sure if coaching by phone would work for him. And to be honest I wasn’t too sure about it myself. But after the first session we were both convinced, that this will work. We reached a great level of depths and trust in our conversation, and over the next couple of months were able to tackle the main challenges.

Since then I have conducted many virtual and face-to-face coaching sessions with clients from different countries and levels. And as much as I like – and still sometimes prefer – the personal face-to-face sessions, virtual coaching is often the better and more effective solution for both sides. Over the years I learned about a couple of conditions that need to be in place to make sure, the virtual coaching session works well. Some of these aspects are simple technical aspects, some have to do with creating the right mindset and conditions for the coachee:

 

The Right Tools & Platforms for Virtual Coaching

These days we have more options to choose when it comes to platforms. Zoom, MS Teams and most other video-call applications are working very well and stable. But in my experience, you do not necessarily need video, it sometimes even disctracts in a coaching conversation, for example when it freezes, or video and voice are not in synch. I usually ask the coachee to turn on his/her webcam at the beginning of the session for a couple of minutes to basically re-connect. After that we both turn the video off, so we can focus on the conversation. And this method really does enhance our capability to truly listen.