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June 12, 2024

Guide Your Team with GROW Model Coaching Questions

We all know that person who always has to be the problem-solver, right? They’re like the Hermione Granger of the office – the first to have their hand up and an answer at the ready. But, when it comes to leading a team, being a know-it-all isn’t necessarily the best approach. 

Instead of solving everyone’s problems for them, guiding your team to find their own solutions can be a game changer. That’s where GROW model coaching questions come in.

Why Guiding and Coaching Is Better Than Telling

First, let’s talk about how guiding your team has some pretty sweet benefits. For starters, it helps people think for themselves. When employees solve their own problems, they become more engaged and take ownership of their work. It’s like leveling up in a video game – they get better with each challenge they conquer.

Next, coaching builds trust and rapport. When leaders take the time to listen and guide, it shows they value their team’s input. Plus, it empowers employees, giving them a confidence boost and helping them to think creatively. And, let’s be honest, who doesn’t want a team full of confident, innovative people?

Lastly, by guiding rather than telling, you’re helping to cultivate the next generation of leaders. By fostering a culture of coaching, leaders can identify and nurture potential within their teams.

"Tell me and I forget...Involve me and I learn." - Benjamin Franklin

What is the GROW Coaching Model?

Enter the GROW model – your new best friend in coaching. It’s a widely-used framework that helps leaders guide their employees through problem-solving and goal-setting processes. The model was developed by executive coach Sir John Whitmore and colleagues in the 1980s, and was first described in Whitmore’s book Coaching for Performance.

The GROW Model stands for:

  1. Goal: Define what the employee wants to achieve.
  2. Reality (or Obstacles): Understand the current situation and identify obstacles.
  3. Options: Explore various strategies or solutions to reach the goal.
  4. Will (or Way Forward): Determine the actions needed and commit to a plan.

GROW Coaching Model Diagram

When to Use the GROW Model

The GROW model is versatile and can be applied in various workplace situations. It’s particularly effective during one-on-one checkins with employees, performance reviews, career development discussions, and when addressing specific challenges or projects. 

Leaders can use this model to help employees set and achieve personal or professional goals, overcome obstacles, and develop new skills. It’s also useful for team leaders looking to foster a coaching culture within their teams.

GROW Model Coaching Questions

Here are some practical questions leaders can use for each stage of the GROW model:

Coaching Questions for “Goal”

  • What do you want to achieve in this situation?
  • What outcome do you want?
  • How will you know when you have achieved this goal?
  • Why is this goal important to you?
  • What would success look like for you?

 

Coaching Questions for “Reality” (Obstacles)

  • What is happening now regarding this goal?
  • What obstacles are you currently facing?
  • What’s getting in the way?
  • Where are you stuck?
  • How do these obstacles affect your progress?

 

Coaching Questions for “Options”

  • What are some possible strategies you could use to achieve your goal?
  • How might you go about addressing this?
  • What do you think you could do?
  • Which options seem most viable to you?
  • What might be a creative solution you haven’t considered yet?

 

Coaching Questions for “Will” (Way Forward)

  • Which strategies do you want to try? 
  • What specific actions will you commit to?
  • What will you do first, and by when?
  • How will you stay motivated and on track?
  • What support or resources do you need to succeed?

Closing Thoughts

The GROW model is a powerful tool for leaders. It helps you guide your team to set and achieve their goals, overcome obstacles, and develop new skills. By asking the right questions, you can foster a culture of growth and autonomy. So next time you’re tempted to jump in and solve a problem, take a step back and try guiding instead. Your team will thank you.

Adopting the GROW model and these coaching questions can level up your leadership game. You’ll not only improve your team’s performance but also build a stronger, more capable team ready to tackle any challenge that comes their way. Happy coaching!

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