Coaching skills for HR / L&D professionals


There are huge benefits to using a coaching style when engaging with line managers and stakeholders.

This doesn’t mean that you have to be a fully qualified coach. (We have other courses for that!)

But what it does mean is having the ability to deploy key coaching skills naturally, in the moment, to best effect.

This modular programme will help. The focus is on building skills and knowing when and how best to deploy them. The modular approach helps build confidence and gives opportunities for practice and reflection.

Learning objectives

This workshop will help you to:

  • Appreciate the value of coaching in your role
  • Understand when to use a coaching style – and when not to
  • Practice and develop the key skills:
    • Trust and rapport
    • Questioning
    • Active listening
    • Goal-setting
  • Use the solution-focused approach
  • Challenge effectively


HR and L&D professionals who do not necessarily aspire to a formal coaching qualification (or, at least, not yet) but who want to develop their partnering approach with line managers and other internal clients and stakeholders through the effective, appropriate and confident use of coaching skills and techniques.


There are three components to this programme: two facilitated workshops (held at least two weeks apart) plus practice and ‘live’ coaching sessions.

  • Part 1: Coaching fundamentals and practice workshop.
  • Part 2: A minimum of two coaching sessions to be carried out between the two workshops. One to be with an allocated ‘buddy’ from the programme, one to be a genuine ‘live’ session with a line manager or stakeholder.
  • Part 3: Additional coaching tools, coaching ‘clinic’ and further coaching practice.

This programme can be delivered either virtually or face-to-face.

Programme outline


We recommend that, by way of ‘pre-work’, participants reflect on their understanding and experience of coaching and opportunities to coach.

1 Welcome, aims and introductions

2 What is coaching?

  • Definition of coaching
  • Difference between coaching, mentoring, advising, managing, etc.
  • Benefits of using a coaching approach
  • Push-pull continuum
  • Your preference and how to flex your style

3 When to coach

  • Opportunities to coach
  • What stops us coaching
  • The coaching mindset
  • Skill-will matrix

4 Is this coaching?

  • Exercise – coaching of whole group
  • Facilitated session to explore what elements of coaching were present and what was missing

5 Key coaching skills

  • Self-assessment on skills – checklist
  • A ‘deeper dive’ into key skills, with mini-exercises:
    • Trust and rapport: how do we develop rapport?
    • Questioning: powerful questions; coach the trainer
    • Active listening: creating and holding the space to think
    • Goal-setting: Powerful outcomes
  • Support v challenge

6 Creating a partnership

  • Creating a partnership / coaching alliance
    • How will you position coaching?
    • Coach-coachee responsibilities: how you will work together.
    • Coaching in the moment

7 Coaching framework – OSCAR

  • Demo and practice

8 And finally…

  • Review of key learning points
  • Preparing for the next workshop – and the practice sessions


Before attending the second workshop, participants are expected to undertake at least two practice coaching sessions (one with a ‘buddy’ from the programme) and to reflect on their coaching practice, successes, challenges, questions, etc.

1 Welcome back

  • Check-in

2 Coaching practice

  • Sparkling moments linked to coaching practice.
  • Focusing on the positive: a solution-focused approach.
  • Acknowledging your coachee – why this is important and what to acknowledge

3 Coaching ‘clinic’

  • Successes and insights; what surprised you most?
  • Challenges for group clinic – additional strategies, tips and tools to build coaching practice and confidence

4 Challenge in coaching

  • Support v challenge. Preferred approaches.
  • The value of using challenge in coaching
  • What stops us challenging?
  • How to challenge effectively – different ways of offering challenge
  • Exercise – using challenging interventions. Coach the trainer.

5 Coaching practice

  • In trios – using the Oscar framework
  • Feedback in trios – focus on how challenge was used
  • Plenary debrief

6 And finally…

  • Review of learning
  • Actions and next steps
  • Closing exercise

For a no-obligation discussion about running this programme for your organisation on an in-house basis, just give us a call on 01582 463462.