Change process beyond goals: The client in the context of the working alliance in coaching
Psychological literature emphasizes that
1) orientation to immediate affective experience
2) recognition of mental processes in the present moment, and
3) an attitude characterized by curiosity, openness and acceptance as the key components of self-regulation are important as
goal intentions alone do not automatically result in effective goal attainment in coaching. However, little is known about the mechanisms by which change processes affect clients’ self-regulatory capacities in coaching.
Thus, this quantitative longitudinal research explores the extent to which a) client characteristics and b) coach-client interactional processes are likely to relate to how clients feel capacitated to self-regulate in the coaching process. In this context, we posit that clients attain goals beyond goals through coaching. They build their capacity to sustain goal-directed behavior and reach authentic self-development even after coaching is completed.
In doing so, we extend prior research in three ways: First, we claim that coach-client interactional processes lead to clients’ self-regulatory capacity towards goal attainment. Specifically, we explore coach-client interactional processes through movement synchrony as measured through motion energy between coach and client. Second, we investigate the extent to which working alliance strengthens or weakens the relationship between movement synchrony and clients’ self-regulation in the change process.
Third, we investigate clients’ personality as the balanced representation of affect (A), behavior (B), cognition (C), and desire (D) as dimensions of the Big Five trait personality inventory. The aim is to understand the extent to which the ABCDs relate to how clients self-regulate and how that self-regulation results in client’s authentic self-development beyond mere goal attainment through coaching.
Tünde Erdös - Ashridge MSc. in Executive Coaching, ICF MCC, EMCC Senior Practitioner For 15+ years, Tünde has been working as an external executive coach for middle management, including executives and C Suite leadership. She has authored two books on coaching and has published in peer-reviewed academic journals as well as practice-oriented articles in coaching magazines. She teaches at HEC university in Paris and lectures at various universities around the world.
Currently, as a co-lead at Global ICF Coaching Science Community of Practice, Tünde’s inspiration is to encourage coaches and leadership to base their practice harmoniously on professional wisdom and empirical evidence.