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Coaching for Success Through Skills Assessments

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Why Use Assessments in Your Coaching Practice

Coaching for personal growth and development is a hot topic. Especially as people are learning to navigate a new reality during the pandemic. Our social constructs are out of sync, making our inner compasses feel skewed. The need for skilled coaches with a full tool bag to help individuals and organizations get back on track is stronger than ever. As an Excellence Coach, I find that using skills assessment tools is one of the greatest strengths for an effective coaching contract for three reasons.

The first reason I advocate the use of an assessment tool is to allow the client to self-assess the skills they have. What is important in the dialogue that follows is that the scores are a step removed from the individual – the coaching conversation is about the scores, not the person. This takes the pressure off the conversation and helps strengthen the coaching relationship because it is not an assessment of the quality of the person, merely a skills assessment. By talking about the scores as a snapshot on that day, at that moment, the conversation is easily framed around which skills they would like to strengthen and steers clear of any perceived personal flaws that would need to be defended. The coaching dialogue becomes a conversation about the document and a shared planning of what the client wants to work on.

The second advantage to using an assessment tool is accountability and success tracking. Assessments can be retaken at any time and the client is able to see progress over time. Without an assessment tool it is difficult to determine the impact or success of the coaching sessions. Without an assessment the client may perceive their work with you as successful if they are in a good mood, or have had a good week, or strong sales numbers. However, through use of an assessment tool, there is an objective measure of their growth regardless of how other things are unfolding in their life.

What I have found as a third advantage is that using an assessment tool generally leads to longer coaching contracts, too. Because the client can see their growth in the scores, they begin to look for other skills they want to develop with you. Their recorded successes also lead to referrals as they share the change in their scores with others – and everyone shares their successes!

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