02/11/2012 by Kris Robertson
The GROW (Goal, Reality, Options, Will) model is the most common and widely used coaching tool. It empowers the coach to structure a coaching conversation and deliver a meaningful result.
The GROW acronym suggests that a coach using the GROW model is likely to start by asking the client to set goals, both for what they want to get out of the coaching sessions as a whole and for each individual session.
Using the GROW Model, the coach will begin the discussion by asking the client to define the topic in order to understand what specifically the client wants to talk about, the scale of the challenges they face, the importance and emotional significance of the topic to the client and the client’s long-term vision or goal.
Most coaches will encourage clients to set goals which are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Agreed, Realistic and Time-framed) the idea being that this will assist the client in focusing their thoughts and will also enable them to measure whether they achieve what they are aiming for in the long-term.
In the ‘Reality’ stage of the GROW Model the coach will assist the client in assessing objectively where they currently are in relation to their goal and how they feel about their current situation. This process of discovery is designed to allow the help the client clarify their goals better and as they begin to understand them more deeply what is driving them and what their sources of dissatisfaction are. In summary both coach and client encourage self-assessment and offer explicit examples to demonstrate their points and paint the most accurate picture of the topic as possible.
In the ‘Options’ stage of the GROW Model the idea is not to find a solution immediately, but to generate as many alternative courses of action as possible. Once a number of options have been identified the next stage will be to decide which one the client wants to put into action to help move them towards their goals. In this final ‘Will’ stage of the GROW Model the coach/client relationship is moving from discussion to conclusion and achievement.
The coach’s ultimate aim is assist the client identify goals, options and actions for themselves, including:
- What the client is going to do
- When the client will do it
- Whether it will help them meet their goals
- What difficulties might be faced and how they may be dealt with
- Who the client will tell and what support they may try to get to help in their actions
- Overall the GROW Model provides a helpful practical framework to assist clients set goals and move towards them.