Building on John Whitmore’s GROW model, TGROW follows the same course but adds an element that allows the coach and client to define a specific area for examination.
This is particularly useful when working with a coachee who has so much going on that they don’t quite know where to start.
Let’s go through the five stages of TGROW:
T - Topic: This stage is designed to be separate and distinct from the goal, which comes later in the process. Rather, it is the means by which the coach can have the coachee focus on one specific area that needs attention; to define the scope and scale of the issue and to put it into the context of the greater whole.
It’s critical at this stage that the coach is disciplined enough to mine down for the exact topic, and to discard (at least for now) unrelated or separate issues. Feeding back to the client in order to ensure that both parties are clear on what the exact issue is, along with other aspects such as timeframe, impact, interpersonal elements (when others may be critical to the resolution of the issue) etc.
G - Goal: Defines the preferred or desired outcome of a resolution to the issue defined in the ‘topic’ phase. This can be broken down into different areas; long-term, medium term, short term, for this session.
Goals might seem to be concrete when they are being defined, but the coach needs to be aware that goals are organic and can change according to circumstances, mood, outside influences so should be checked periodically throughout the intervention.
R -Reality: Where are we now in respect of the focal issue? Where are we in respect of the desired outcomes (goals)?
O - Options: What are the coachee’s options in moving forward towards the goal or outcome? This is an area in which a less experienced coach can be misled by a client into accepting a handful of options, but should be pushing hard to unleash or unlock some ‘wildcard’ options. Engaging with the coachee’s creativity to find innovative or wacky possibilities can sometimes reveal new routes to success.
W - Way forward: Once coach and coachee have explored some options and discarded the impossible or impractical it’s time to decide on the way forward. The coach should be willing to hold the coachee accountable for his or her actions, so an exact timeframe is important. To smooth the way it might help if the coach can remind the client that the whole can be undertaken in many small steps, so the way forward might mean one simple task being accomplished in a set time, with further clearly defined actions to follow from there.
About the author
TJ and Unlimited Potential are looking to create the most comprehensive list of acronym-based coaching models out there - with your help, we can do this.
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