Glossary of Key Coaching Terms

The table below provides definitions of key coaching terms used in the ACT Leadership + Performance Coaching Certification Program.

Active ListeningDemonstrating listening to client through paraphrasing back what the coach hears in a way that focuses on the most relevant information relating to their topic or issue at hand
AgileThe ability of the coach to let go of any attachment to where (s)he thinks the client needs to go, instead meeting them where they are, moment to moment
Co-create the RelationshipThe deliberate, intentional practice, led by the coach with client, to create an environment where the client feels safe in being vulnerable and open to the coaching process.
Coaching RangeHow the coach can flex their style to match that of the client. For example, the ability to bring humor, creativity, depth, structure or fierce courage into a session in service of the client.
Creative and ResourcefulThe mindset that the coach sees the client or employee. There is an underlying belief that the other person has the answer within them and the role of the coach is to help them guide to their solution
Creative conversationAn exploratory conversation where new ideas, mindsets, insights and solutions are generated.
CuriosityA mindset for the coach of non-judgment, being OK with not knowing where the conversation is going and forming questions from a place of not knowing.
Diversity and InclusivityThe coach approach, being open, human-centric and safe, fosters an environment where everyone feels safe to show up as themselves without fear of judgment or
Honoring ValuesDefining and connecting to the things that are important to us in our lives and leadership. Values-based leadership means leading with consistency and alignment with the organization.
Human-centricCoaching focuses on the client as a human and not their role or position within their organization.
Person is WholeWhole means the other person is not broken. Body, emotions, thoughts, judgments are all part of the human condition and available for exploration in coaching.
Powerful QuestionsOpen-ended questions that evoke deeper exploration and connection to self. They typically start with How, What, Where, If.
PresenceThe coach creates an environment that invites the client to connect with what his happening in this moment, not the future nor past. The magic happens in the present moment, where full expression and transformation happens.
ReactiveDisconnected from self. Instead of being reflective and self-aware, the client reacts impulsively to situations without engaging all dimensions of self
Relationship-focusedCoaching focuses on ensuring the relationship is clearly defined between coach, client and whomever is involved.
Self-managingPreceded by self-awareness, Self-Managing is a skill used by the coach to check-in with self when (s)he becomes distracted and then reconnecting with client.
SensingListening to the energy beyond the words. Examples include tone of voice, volume, rhythm, pitch and body language. These are clues to how the client is relating to themselves.

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