Frequently Asked Questions

Dispelling myths, debunking the nonsense, and (hopefully) demystifying the field of coaching, collaboration and digital transformation.

Frequently asked questions

1 - What is a coach, and what is coaching?

A coach is a professional who helps you reach a goal or make a change in your life. The International Coach Federation (ICF) defines coaching as, “partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximise their personal and professional potential.”

2 - What does a coach do?

A coach helps you identify and achieve your goals. They guide you through changes and obstacles, and support you in your decision making processes. Coaching is future focussed, rather than dealing primarily with the past, and is focussed on solutions, rather than problems. A coach is not a therapist, counsellor, or consultant, and does not usually give advice or tell you what to do. They help you find the right answers for you, believing in your wisdom, and helping you find answers that feel right to you, through discussion, suggestions, brainstorming and reflection.

3 - How should I choose a coach?

Coaching is an unregulated industry, which means that the quality can vary significantly. We advise clients seeking coaching, to ask any prospective coach the following questions and make a decision based on confidence in their answers;

  • What is your area of specialism? (Does this match your coaching requirements)
  • Who is your accrediting body, and in particular, what are their competencies and ethics? (Daring Futures coaches are members of, and accredited by the International Coach Federation. ICF Accreditation brings consistency to coaching competencies, and gives ethical assurance through adherence to the ICF competence and ethical frameworks)
  • Are you undertaking continuing professional development (CPD)? (As coaching is constantly evolving, conscientious coaches are continuously updating their skills and awareness of the field)
  • Do you have a coach? (Coaches that are serious about their practice have a coach or mentor. If they believe in their product, why wouldn’t they?)
  • Do you have a supervisor? (A coach’s best instrument is their quality of present - self as an instrument - and supervision is where competent coaches regularly calibrate this)
  • Can you supply client testimonials for a similar type of coaching engagement? (Can they support their claims of successes with clients willing to testify to this?)

4 - How does coaching work - what can I expect?

The outcome of a coaching session is a feeling of direction and purpose, whilst feeling energised and confident in taking action towards that purpose. At times this might feel uncomfortable, as your coach is there to push you and challenge you, to break through old beliefs that might be limiting your performance. The relationship is a partnership too, as your coach is a non-judgemental party who is looking out for your best interests, with no ulterior motive other than to see you succeed. These conversations may take place face to face, over the Internet or via the phone, at regular intervals (typically weekly or fortnightly) to compound your progress and gain momentum for change. Each coaching session might look slightly different, depending on what methods (or plays) your coach uses, and what stage of coaching you are in. The relationship is also dynamic as you co-create your coaching partnership; a process we call designing the alliance.

5 - Does coaching really work?

In a global survey conducted by ICF, 99% of respondents said that they were satisfied with the overall experience, with 96% indicating that they would repeat the process, give the same circumstances that prompted them seeking a coach in the first place. Benefits include increased productivity, more positivity (self-confidence and self-trust), and a positive return on investment. And if you’d like to ask any of our clients about their experiences, we’ll happily put you in touch.

6 - From your playbook, what’s a play?

Taken from the world of sports coaching, we define a play as a tactic or a method for achieving a specific aim or outcome. As you can see from our Discover, Deliver, Delight™ practices, we have grouped specific plays to achieve specific practice objectives. Furthermore, through our coaching, we break plays down into specific drills, which can be practiced, or rehearsed, offline from the main project activities. This greatly reduces learning anxieties, whilst increasing the opportunities for growth in competence and confidence to take place.

7 - Why have you chosen to make your playbook public?

Several reasons:

  • We’ve been privileged to do work that we love, by standing on the shoulders of giants, and we’d like their work to be more widely recognised and adopted.
  • We wanted to contribute our own offerings to the field, and support the effort to move it forward.
  • One of our core values is about simplifying complexity, and we believe that we can lift the mysticism surrounding these plays to make them more widely accessible.
  • We’re all about realising ambition through collaboration, and we truly believe that these and other plays can make the world of work a better place.

8 - What do the Discover, Deliver, Delight™ practices look like?

As the old saying goes, a picture paints a thousand words, and so we posted this article to explain the Discover, Deliver, Delight™ practices in more detail.

9 - What if we want to do all of the work ourselves?

We’d love that, too! As we said earlier, we’re all about realising ambition through collaboration, and we believe that the democratisation of these plays will act as a rising tide to lift all ships! Please share your successes and promote the great work of the contributors. If you use any of our materials, please let us know, we’d love to hear your stories, and especially any feedback if there's any ways in which we can improve them.

10 - How disruptive would a digital transformation be to my operation?

It depends. There are 2 factors influencing this - the demands of the challenge, and the demands of implementation.

Firstly, digital transformation success is dependant upon the design efficiencies in the processes being digitised - automating an inefficient process will magnify any inefficiencies. These creep in as an organisation grows organically, when the way work gets done is adapted to suit the evolving needs. New processes emerge alongside existing ones, along with the tacit knowledge needed to know which to use. And like a garden that becomes overgrown, these processes need to be tidied up, with appropriate controls put in place, in order to keep the operation running smoothly. By contrast, efficient processes lend themselves to being automated profitably. Therefore, the first disruption might be in quantifying the current “as-is” state of the processes.

The second factor impacting the level of disruption is the scope and pace of the implementation. Changing everything quickly is going to be much more disruptive than a measured ‘little and often’ approach. This is why we advocate a strategy of continuous improvement, rather than ‘big bang’ implementations. A natural outcome of this approach is that the transformation can course correct, as unforeseen challenges need addressing, meaning that the transformation doesn’t lose momentum, and is ultimately is more cost effective.

11 - But we're not an IT company, does that matter?

No, not at all, and in fact, this is a common question posed by clients operating non-digital or traditional businesses. Managing digital delivery requires a shift in thinking within the organisation, from IT being a service to becoming an enabler through innovation. For example, digital prototyping can typically outperform physical prototype creation during the early phases of the research and development process. But be warned, this capability can become a victim of its own success, if it is flooded with new ideas to deliver.

12 - It sounds expensive, is it?

We believe that technology shouldn’t be a cost to the business, it should be a multiplier. So if yours isn’t performing as it should be, let’s have a conversation to explore how this might be changed in your favour.

13 - How would I fund a digital transformation?

There are several funding options to clients. Often, a smaller pilot project frees up existing capital through cost savings, which can be reinvested, to finance larger pieces of work going forward. This growth is organic, however, we can also offer finance through a partner to fund any aspects of the work.

14 - What sort of client is a good fit for Daring Futures?

Quite simply, they have an ambition, and are ready, willing and able to take action in realising this.

15 - OK, so what's the first step I can take?

Have an initial conversation with us. Following that, we often advise an exploration workshop where, together with the leaders involved in the venture, we create a shared understanding of the challenge. This also yields an initial action plan to move forward with.

“Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”

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