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Three cornered coaching contract


I am about to embark on a pilot scheme, using internal coaches within our organisation. This will include developing the coaches, and promoting their services to our managers, then evaluating the pilot, and reporting outcomes to senior managers.

I understand that the coaching contract need not necessarliy be a written document, however to provide clarity for the potential coaches and managers, I would like to provide a template, to establish the boundaries of the coaching relationship for the coach/coachee and line manager, identify the desired outcomes, and ensure that the appropriate baseline information is gathered.

I have some ideas about what should go into the template, but would appreciate any advice or examples, regarding either devising the template, or the pilot in general.

Many thanks

Nicola Sutherland

6 Responses

  1. Try the GROW model
    The GROW model might help here, Nicola. Rather than have a template to apply to everyone, you might like to encourage the protagonists to try it as the foundation for action. When I Googled ‘GROW model’ I came upon this helpful site: (with which I have no connection or vested interest).

  2. is this what you are thinking about?
    I think you are after the policies in which coaching will operate rather than a coaching model per se so here are my thoughts.

    1. Confidentiality;
    you need to consider from the
    a)coachee PoV; can I trust that what we discuss is between us alone?
    b)coaches PoV; now that I now that am I morally obliged to keep it confidential or do something about it?

    2. Time:
    a) as a coachee am I “allowed” the time to seek coaching?
    b) as a coach am I allowed the time to coach?
    c) as a manager of a coach or a coachee am I allowed the wherewithall to allow my staff time to coach/be coached

    3. KPIs: is coaching going to be a KPI? ie
    a)will I be encouraged to coach/rewarded for coaching/censured for not coaching (if it was wanted)
    b) how will this KPI be measured

    4. Who has the right to call in the marines?
    a)As a coach can I say that the issue is outside my remit/expertise?
    a)As a coachee can I say that this particular coach is a muppet (see “News and Features”…mentoring article but the same will apply)

    I don’t know if this helps but it may give you something to think about


  3. Manager’s POV
    Hi Nicola

    Just a thought to add to Rus’s suggestions. Where I have been retained by a client to coach their staff, I have made an agreement that the client/line manager will be informed of any agreed actions as a result of the coaching, but the detail of the sessions will remain confidential. So far, I’ve not had any objections to that.


  4. A template example
    Ann Holloway’s coaching and mentoring resource ‘Coaching and Mentoring for Success’ includes examples of coaching contracts. It’s an audio CD – which includes links to downloadable templates for contracts, PDPs, review documents, learning logs etc. If you contact me directly I will send you the link to the contract template, so you can have a look for yourself.
    Best wishes
    [email protected]

  5. legal and relationship contracts
    It is a myth that a coaching contract does not need to be written and you are quite right to provide a template.

    The contract needs to contain the necessary legal elements but there is also a ‘relationship contract’ which must be represented. Where the company is the sponsor, the employee will want to feel secure, so issues such as: confidentiality, feedback, boundaries, etc., need to be represented.

    It is also very wise to include KPI’s and to establish measurements for ROI.

  6. GROW Model

    Hi, I agree with the others here that it is always advisable to have a learning contract which lays out roles and expectetions. This needs to be a written document and I usually include this with any coaching proposal I make.


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