Tim Hawkes explains an outcome-focused coaching model called OSKAR.
Developed from ‘The Solutions Focus’ by Paul Z Jackson and Mark McKergow, OSKAR is a solutions-based model, rather than problem based. I’m sure most coaches have had a client that was in a perpetual state of ‘yes, but…’, throwing out problem after problem. This model might be a good tool to use when faced with such a coachee.
O – Outcome: What will the big picture look like when you have achieved/fixed/resolved this?” What does the coachee want to achieve from this session? From the intervention as a whole? What would a perfect future look or feel like? “If I could give you three wishes, what would you want?”
S – Scaling: This is a matter of giving the coachee a chance to reflect on where they are in respect of the issue, so something like “On a scale of 1 – 10, where 1 is you have no way forward and 10 is you have a clear and definite path forward…where would you say you are at the moment?”
The coach can be as imaginative and as intuitive as they want at this point, as gaining coachee buy-in is vital. Using a scale and a language that they will respond to positively will help establish motivation.
K – Know-how: At this point the coach can start to explore what skills and attributes the coachee has that might help them reach their stated objective. When have they surmounted a similar difficulty? What experiences can they draw on?
A – Action/Affirmation: Here the coach can boost motivation by reflecting back to the client the positive aspects that have been uncovered in the ‘K’ section; developing on the themes of previous successes.
Once again, the coach’s use of appropriate and considered language; using the same kind of phrasing, intonation etc. as the client, can be powerful in gaining unconscious acceptance of their own abilities to resolve the situation. This stage should also define what specific actions the coachee will take and when.
R – Review: Wrap up the session by reviewing what has been said, what has been decided in terms of future actions and how these should be measured. Done at the end of a session, it can also be revisited at the start of the next one. Focus on using positive language and emphasising the positives at all times.
About the author
Tim Hawkes is managing director of Unlimited Potential.
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