I’d like to introduce Bob Thomson, a Critical Publishing author whose book, Non-directive Coaching, published in April.
When Julia asked me to post a blog entry I was happy to oblige as she and Di did a wonderful job producing my book, Non-directive Coaching.
Reading that Julia and Di had been reflecting on their choice of the name Critical Publishing led me to think about the word critical. IT is a word that often has negative overtone but can actually be positive or negative. It’s a bit like the word assertive which in everyday language is equated with aggressive. I think that basic assertiveness – getting your own way – is a one-way street version. Genuine assertiveness – stating clearly your own position and respectfully giving equal space to the other person to state what they want – is a two-way street.
In a similar way, the two-way street version of the word critical is essentially positive. As the thesaurus on my laptop suggests, it implies significant, important, essential, analytical and judicious. I imagine it’s this view of critical which Julia and Di had in mind when they named their company.
One aspect of the role of a coach is as a critical friend – someone who can blend support and challenge to help a client work out what they really want and what they will do to achieve this. And while a non-directive coach is non-directive about the content of the client’s thinking, they are directive about the process, actively managing and structuring the coaching conversation in the interest of the client. This is a two-way street notion of non-directive.
Author of Non-directive Coaching